Geneva, 6 March 2008
The International Publishers Association condemns the calls for a boycott of this year’s Salon du Livre in Paris.
IPA President, Ana Maria Cabanellas, and the Chair of IPA’s Freedom to Publish Committee, Bjørn Smith-Simonsen, issue the following statement:
“It is with great sadness that we have noted the calls to boycott the Salon du Livre in Paris on the grounds that Israeli literature has been invited as this year’s guest of honour.
We note that the Salon is a privately organised event, owned by the French publishers association, SNE. The invitation of Israeli literature must not be misinterpreted as support for Israeli domestic or foreign policy, either by the host or by the participating authors and publishers.
IPA fights for open and peaceful dialogue through literature and books. International book fairs are important for a for cultural and political exchange. Individual publishers and their authors must be allowed to make a free choice as to the context in which their works should be represented.
IPA therefore appeals to its members to oppose any call for the boycott of any book fair because they disagree with a chosen guest of honour.
I look forward to an open and peaceful dialogue among writers and publishers from around the world at the 2008 Salon du Livre in Paris (14-19 March 2008)”.
Ana Maria Cabanellas
IPA’s Freedom to Publish Committee
International Publishers Association