The Palestinian singer released the song in 2015 and it has been a hit across the Arab world ever since.
The famous hit “Dammi Falastini” by Palestinian singer Mohammed Assaf has been taken down from Spotify and other music streaming platforms after a targeted attack by various pro-Israel groups, reports reveal.
The song, which was first made available in 2015 in his Muntasib Alqamah Amshi album, is no longer available on platforms Spotify and Deezer.
The move by the streaming giant to remove the song came after a petition organised by pro-Zionist We Believe in Israel (WBII) and the Board of Deputies garnered nearly 4,000 signatures.
According to Roya News, Assaf received an official email citing accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’ as the reason for the song’s deletion.
In an interview with The New Arab, the Palestinian singer expressed his surprise upon finding out that his song had been removed from the platforms, emphasising that its removal only heightens his sense of honour as it demonstrates the Palestinian people’s resistance against the occupying forces.
Palestinians and others have rallied behind Assaf on social media, with many appreciating his patriotic stance and opposition to intimidation.
Users on social media took their frustration online to voice their concerns over the one-sided and ‘unfair’ move by Spotify.
Many noted the meaning of the song’s lyrics, emphasising how it is in fact a celebration of Arab and Palestinian identity while also singing odes to a rich heritage.
“Shameless and spineless from Spotify to remove Mohammed Assaf’s ‘Dammi Falestini’ song. It doesn’t even mention Israel and is just about Palestinian identity and heritage yet is somehow still seen as a problem?” one user noted on Twitter.
Other users have shared the lyrics online as testament to the positive message underpinning the song.
“@Spotify why are you involving yourself in the erasure of a people? Return Dammi Falastini,” another such frustrated social media user pointed out, drawing comparisons between the erasure of the ‘harmless’ Palestinian song and Israel’s long ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinians.
As the first Palestinian to win Arab Idol, Assaf was a wedding singer from a refugee camp in Gaza, who had captured the attention of millions of spectators, including President Mahmoud Abbas.
Following his victory on the show, the young singer paid tribute to the Palestinians, who have been suffering under occupation for decades.