- Title: GERMANY-ISRAEL/CONCERT IRAN Iran bans German orchestra concert
- Date: 31st August 2015
- Summary: PEOPLE APPLAUDING / ORCHESTRA STANDING UP AFTER PERFORMANCE
- Embargoed: 15th September 2015 13:00
- Location: Romania
- Country: Romania
- Topics: General
- Reuters ID: LVA7JSONI33K13VRZR7UVFIASFNF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Iran banned the German orchestra led by Israeli-Argentinian star conductor Daniel Barenboim from performing in the country because of the conductor's Israeli citizenship, Fars news agency reported on Friday (August 28).
"The Islamic Republic is against the travel of any artist or group that are related to the Zionist regime. That's why the German orchestra's visit to Iran was cancelled," spokesman for Iranian Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, Hassan Noushabadi was quoted as saying by Fars news agency on Friday.
Barenboim was in talks to take one of Germany's main orchestras to Iran, his employer Berlin State Opera said last Thursday (August 27), in the face of angry protests from Israel.
The opera said the plans by its Israeli-Argentinian musical director had the full backing of German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, setting up a possible confrontation with Israel which called the state support for the trip a "mistake".
The announcement of the visit comes at a particularly sensitive time for Israel, which is concerned that last month's nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, including Germany, could empower one of its main enemies and ease Tehran's international isolation.
The 72-year-old conductor and pianist has also been an outspoken critic of Israel's Palestinian policies.
"We have no problem with the German orchestra coming to Iran, but we are opposed to the person leading that group," Noushabadi was quoted as saying by the media.
Barenboim also has Argentinian and Palestinian citizenship.
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