Eurovision 2012 – According to the Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper, Azerbaijan has portrayed Frankfurt as a “seedy city rife with homelessness, drug-use and prostitution”. Germany attacked Azerbiajan on their human rights records earlier this year. Azerbaijani human right activist Rasul Jafarov said there is now “a real smear campaign against Germany going on” in retaliation.
According to the German newspaper, Azerbaijani state television channel AZTV showed Frankfurt as a ‘city of sin’ talking of tramps, junkie and sex-workers. Television pictures were shown of the seedy district around the city’s train station and the “Occupy” protest camp outside the European Central Bank.
German newspapers had unsuccessfully called on musicians and viewers to boycott this year’s Eurovision Song Contest in Baku. The Germans have a large role to play however this year, with Stefan Raab’s company producing the TV show, and German construction firms have helped build the new Crystal Hall..
The Frankfurter Rundschau claimed that Azerbaijani state media has also tried to discredit Markus Löning, who has repeatedly criticized Azerbaijan’s poor record on press freedom, calling him a ‘drunkard who had had sex with a local civil rights activist’.
Although the Eurovision Song Contest tries to remain politically neutral, it isn’t always that simple. We’re sure that all this can be put to one side in Baku next month though and everyone regardless of their country will have an amazing Eurovision in Azerbaijan.
Source: The Frankfurter Rundschau