Photo: Vugarİbadov

Russia Banned From Eurovision Song Contest

Stating that it would bring the competition into disrepute “in light of the unprecedented crisis in Ukraine,” the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) – which produces the Eurovision Song Contest – has banished Russia from the 2022 show.

In a formal statement about their recent decision, the EBU said:

“The decision reflects concern that, in light of the unprecedented crisis in Ukraine, the inclusion of a Russian entry in this year’s Contest would bring the competition into disrepute. Before making this decision the EBU took time to consult widely among its membership. The EBU is an apolitical member organization of broadcasters committed to upholding the values of public service.”

Determined to protect the “values” of the event to be held in Turin, Italy, in May, the statement explained “We remain dedicated to protecting the values of a cultural competition which promotes international exchange and understanding, brings audiences together, celebrates diversity through music and unites Europe on one stage.”

Though Russia first launched an attack on Ukraine on Thursday (2.23), the EBU initially confirmed that the country would be able to compete at Eurovision, explaining that they were “currently planning” to host entrants from both Russia and Ukraine.

However, Ukraine’s state broadcaster, UA:PBC, called for Russia to be suspended from the event, describing their counterparts as a “mouthpiece for the Kremlin and a key tool of political propaganda”.

UA:PBC also described the situation as being “contrary” to the values of the EBU.

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Author: Saul Goode

Photo: Vugarlbadov