MP calls for ban on Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters Manchester show over 'anti-Jewish' acts in Berlin

Christian Wakeford voiced his concerns in the House of Commons. Credit: PA Images

A Pink Floyd co-founder should be prevented from performing in Manchester over fears his “divisive actions” could fuel anti-Jewish hatred, an MP has said.

Veteran rocker Roger Waters, who left the band in 1985, played in Germany while “dressed as an SS soldier," the House of Commons was told.

Christian Wakeford, the Labour MP for Bury South, also said Waters had also used the Star of David on a giant pig, and the name of Jewish diarist Anne Frank at his show.

Voicing concerns over Waters’ gig at the AO Arena in Manchester on 10 June, Mr Wakeford said it should not go ahead.

Speaking after the Germany gig Waters said people had been “wrongly accusing me of being an antisemite”, adding he had been left saddened by people trying to cancel his shows.

Roger Waters plays the bass guitar in the band Pink Floyd. Credit: PA Images

Making a statement during business questions, Mr Wakeford told the Commons: “The city of Manchester has a rich and vibrant history in which those of different faiths and backgrounds have lived together as well as stood together through difficult times and times of division.

“So I’m concerned to note that Roger Waters is due to play at the AO Arena in Manchester next month.

“Mr Waters performed in Berlin this week and used the name of Anne Frank to stoke division, performed whilst dressed as an SS soldier and used the Star of David on a giant pig to insinuate that Jewish people run the world.

“The Jewish Representative Council of Greater Manchester has issued a statement condemning his divisive actions.

“Will the Leader of the House agree with me that concerts like this have no place in our society and shouldn’t go ahead, and agree to a debate in Government time on the record levels in anti-Jewish hatred in this country?”

Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt replied: “I think the whole House was very shocked at what (Mr Wakeford) has said.

“I shall make certain that the Home Office has heard (Mr Wakeford’s) concerns today and I think that this House has made great efforts, particularly in recent years, to ensure that the scourge of antisemitism is addressed and stamped out from our country.

“I shall certainly make sure that all relevant departments have heard (Mr Wakeford’s) concerns today.”

The House of Commons were told how Roger Waters played a gig in Germany 'while dressed as an SS soldier'. Credit: PA Images

In a Facebook post Waters thanked those who had attended his shows in Germany, and paid tribute to the White Rose movement, an anti-Nazi Germany resistance group.

“The fact that some in power in Germany and some at the behest of the Israeli lobby have attacked me, wrongly accusing me of being an antisemite, and have tried to cancel my shows saddens me," he said.

“Walking around Munich yesterday afternoon, I couldn’t shake off the feeling that I was in the presence of Big Brother. It leaves a bad taste.”

The Jewish Representative Council of Greater Manchester said in a statement: “Roger Waters is famous for being a member of one of the most important bands in history.

“Unfortunately, he is now more synonymous with spreading deeply troubling political views that will rightly concern Jewish and other communities across Greater Manchester.”

After criticising his actions at a gig in Munich, it added: “Those who are booking Waters to perform must balance whether it is acceptable to be providing a venue for him to spread these views.

“Jewish communities across Greater Manchester are vibrant and thriving. However, allowing Waters to perform risks damaging community cohesion, with the possibility of an increase in hate crime targeting Jewish people.”

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To know...