Organizers of the Cairo International Film Festival have cancelled the event amid an escalating wave of violence in the Middle East.
This was made known in a statement shared via CIFF’s official Facebook page on Wednesday.
The release disclosed that Egypt’s Minister of Culture, Dr. Neveen El-Kelani, made the decision to reschedule the festival which was meant to be held from the 15th to 24th of November, 2023.
“The Minister of Culture Dr. Neveen El-Kelani, has decided to postpone the 45th edition of the Cairo International Film Festival, which was scheduled to be held from 15 to 24 November, and the Festival will be determined at a later date,” the statement read.
While no clear reason was given for the postponement, tensions have been rising in the Middle East for the past week due to the Israel-Hamas war.
Egypt shares a border with Israel which declared war against the Hamas militant group on October 8, 2023.
This declaration came a day after the militant fighters broke through the country’s heavily fortified border and killed more than 1,400 people, most of them civilians.
Israel has responded to the attack with intense bombing of the Gaza Strip in a hunt for members of the militant group. However, Palestinian civilian casualty continues to rise in the bombardment.
Most recently, a hospital was bombed in the region, resulting in the death of hundreds of people on Tuesday.
Health authorities in Hamas-ruled Gaza said the explosion killed between 200 and 300 people and was caused by the latest wave of Israeli air strikes.
Conversely, the Israeli Defence Forces blamed Hamas militants, claiming that the blast was caused by an outgoing Islamic Jihad rocket that misfired.
Palestinian refugees, with hopes of escaping the war, continue to gather at the Rafah border crossing which is the sole passage between Gaza and Egypt.
However, the crossing has completely shut down due to Israeli airstrike attacks.