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Queens Museum cancels event commemorating Israeli state founding, Israel ambassador denounces decision

The Queens Museum

Aug. 16, 2017 By Nathaly Pesantez

The Queens Museum has cancelled an event at its location scheduled for November commemorating the founding of the state of Israel.

The Jerusalem Post reports that a reenactment of the United Nations 1947 vote to create the state of Israel and to partition Palestine was scheduled to take place in the Queens Museum in Flushing Meadows Park, the former temporary site of the United Nations where the vote was originally cast.

The event was put in place by Danny Danon, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, who was informed that the museum had green-lighted the event in June, and worked on redesigning the main gallery of the museum to look like it did during the vote, the site said.

This week, however, Danon received word from Laura Raicovich, the president and executive director of the museum, that the event is cancelled following a board decision not to hold the “political” event.

“We will not accept this blatant discrimination against the State of Israel and we will not let this decision stand,” Ambassador Danon said in a statement on Wednesday, according to the Jerusalem Post.

Danon also called on the Board of Directors to dismiss Raicovich from her post and to hold the event in the fall as planned.

Congresswoman Grace Meng, representing central and northeast Queens, denounced the Queens Museum’s decision, calling the choice to cancel the event “puzzling” and bizarre” in a statement.

“Personally, I do not see how this project is ‘political’. How is commemorating a major world event that took place in Queens and the U.N’s establishment of one of American’s closest allies political?” she said.

Meng added: “The museum should reverse its decision and allow the event to take place as scheduled.”

This November marks the 70th anniversary of the resolution passed by the United Nations that called for the partitioning of Palestine between Jews and Arabs, which allowed for the formation of Israel. The vote was cast in the site now known as the Queens Museum, which housed the General Assembly of the United Nations from 1946 until 1950 before moving to its permanent headquarters in Manhattan.

Calls to the Queens Museum for comment have not been returned.

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