Atlas, one of the most successful world music artists, known for her fusion of Arabic and Western electronic music, was appointed a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Conference against Racism in 2001.
In the cancellation announcement received via email, Atlas wrote: "I had an idea that performing in Israel would have been a unique opportunity to encourage and support my fans’ opposition to the current government’s actions and policies.
"I would have personally asked my Israeli fans face-to-face to fight this apartheid with peace in their hearts, but after much deliberation I now see that it would be more effective a statement to not go to Israel until this systemized apartheid is abolished once and for all.
"Therefore I publicly retract my well-intentioned decision to go and perform in Israel and so sincerely hope that this decision represents an effective statement against this regime. I would like to thank all my fans for their continued support."
The ICP production company, owned by producer Lior Kameli, told Ynet on Sunday: "We have regretfully received the announcement on the cancellation of Natacha Atlas' December 3 concert.
"Quite a few tickets have been booked, and we regret the singer's decision not to arrive in Israel for her own reasons. Ticket buyers will receive their money back."
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