Fearing IS, Israeli theater group requests security escort abroad
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Fearing IS, Israeli theater group requests security escort abroad

Tel Aviv's Cameri asks for Shin Bet protection on Balkans tour; play based on the massacre of 1,600 Polish Jews

Director general of the Cameri Theatre, Noam Semel on May 2, 2012. (Miriam Alster/FLASH90)
Director general of the Cameri Theatre, Noam Semel on May 2, 2012. (Miriam Alster/FLASH90)

The director of the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv said Sunday that the theater has requested that the government provide security detail for the cast during an upcoming tour in the Balkans.

“I spoke with Culture Minister Miri Regev and asked her to speak with the Foreign Ministry and the Defense Ministry so that they will send security agents with us in light of Islamic State threats to carry out attacks in the Balkans,” Noam Semel told the Hebrew-language Walla news site, apparently referring to a propaganda video in which the jihadi militant group urged Muslims to carry out attacks in the Balkans.

“We are embarking on a historic journey with this joint production of the Cameri and Habima [theaters], which is called ‘Our Class’ and deals with the Holocaust,” added Semel. “We are going to be 30 people including actors, musicians and technicians. I am heading the trip and so I bear the responsibility.”

The theater is still waiting for a response from the government, he said.

Written in 2008 by the Polish playwright Tadeusz Slobodzianek, “Our Class” first hit the stage last February. Directed by Hanan Snir and starring Evgenia Dodina and Netta Garti, the play is based on the story behind the massacre of 1,600 Jews who were burned to death by their neighbors in the eastern Polish village of Jedwabne on July 10, 1941.

Ministers and heads of state are expected to attend a ceremony at the conclusion of the performance in Albania for the Righteous Among the Nations, an honorific granted to non-Jews who saved Jewish lives during the Holocaust.

The ceremony will commemorate the courage of the Panariti family who smuggled Jews out from Thessaloniki, Greece and hid them in their home in Korca, Albania. The current Albanian agriculture minister, Edmond Panariti, will represent his family at the ceremony.

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