Israeli film director Udi Aloni, son of the late Meretz leader Shulamit Aloni, on Saturday won a top audience award at Berlin’s International Film Festival, but made headlines because of his remarks against the Israeli government that were caught on camera.
Aloni’s film, “Junction 48”, which tells the story of an Arab rapper making his way in the city of Lod, won the Panorama Audience Award.
But hours before the prize was awarded to him, Channel 10 News reported, Aloni was caught on camera blasting Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his government as “fascist”.
Aloni called Israel a "democracy of white people" and blasted the support of German Chancellor Angela Merkel for Israel, saying "Merkel does not mention the occupation and sells submarines to Netanyahu to continue such things."
Aloni further charged that Germany supported the “fascist regime of Israel”, according to Channel 10.
He also expressed support and admiration for Tamer Nafar, the Palestinian Arab rapper on whose life story his film is based, and who has claimed that Israel is a terrorist country.
"What makes Tamer such an amazing man is that he actually grew up in Lod, and from the beginning he sang about the fact that Israel is the real terrorist,” said Aloni.
Aloni also mentioned Mohammed al-Qiq, the suspected Hamas terrorist who has been on hunger strike for over two months in protest over his administrative detention, as an example of how non-Jews in Israel are treated.
"He is not accused of anything and he is dying and could die any day," charged Aloni.
Aloni reportedly received financial assistance from the Culture and Sports Ministry for the film.
Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev responded with outrage to Aloni’s remarks, saying they proved that Israel must not fund works that slander it.
"What was shown is conclusive proof that artists that undermine the state, slander it and undermine its legitimacy, should not be funded at the expense of the taxpayer. A sane state should not offer help to its detractors who make defamatory remarks, moments after taking money from its coffers,” said Regev.
Aloni responded to the Channel 10 report on Saturday night by saying, "My remarks were directed against the Israeli government and not against the country, which I love. Unlike the Prime Minister who spreads hate, my film spreads love and coexistence".