Eurovision 2017: Could Some Countries Still Pull Out?

Eurovision 2017 – As the tensions between Ukraine and Russia rumble on over whether Russia’s selection, Yulia Samoylova is banned from Ukraine, the EBU has sent a letter stating that several other countries are threatening to boycott the contest this year if she is not allowed to perform. 

ESCKAZ has published the full text of  letter to the Ukraine authorities which is taken from the internet media site KievVlast.

The Director General of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), Ingrid Deltenre, has officially notified Prime Minister of Ukraine, Volodymyr Groysman, on 23rd March that some countries may withdraw, and also said 

“Should this ban be confirmed by your office, it would certainly have a very big negative impact on Ukraine’s international reputation as a modern, democratic European nation. Needless to say that we are also very concerned for the damage this will inflict on the Eurovision Song Contest and the European Broadcasting Union.

“The current situation is causing anger amongst our Members – European Broadcasters across Europe – and we have received communication from a number of them criticizing the decision and considering to withdraw from the event”.

Deltenre also said that a ban on the entry of a Russian participant is regarded as unacceptable and that as a consequence the UA:PBC might be excluded from future events.

Source: Esckaz / KievVlast

50 comments on “Eurovision 2017: Could Some Countries Still Pull Out?

  1. Running order is out for semis !

    Sweden opens semi 1, Latvia closes it. Belgium No. 5 :-(

    Serbia opens semi 2, Israel closes it.

  2. I think this was a bluff tbh, the only countries I could imagine are considering a withdraw are Russia’s close allies but I really don’t picture any withdrawals happening at this point (except for Russia obv)

  3. No f***ing way that other countries will withdraw if Russia is not able to perform in Kiev. If they do it the consequences will be far worse then they already are and will enhance this political situation to an extreme level, which they wouldn’t dare. Also having these countries in question anonymous makes it even more of an empty threat tbh.

    • Does not sound like an empty threat. I don’t think they would make it if they couldn’t back it up. We know that the danish, german and sammarinese broadcasters have already made public statements against the ban. Yesterday Bulgaria’s artist also did the same.

      I think the crucial phrase in the whole letter however is this: “No previous host country has prevented an artist performing at the Eurovision Song Contest and the EBU would not like a precedent to be set in 2017”. Nothing more needs to be added. EBU can not back down on this and Ukraine will have to pay a price one way or the other.

      • My point is they wouldn’t dare, sure if the Bulgarian artist is against it as well, but isn’t he like 17.. You also have to think of the other artists and all the people who voted for them. Taking that away is just asking for a political shitstorm. You cannot make this into soley a political contest, then it will ultimately collapse. So I agree the EBU must change its priorities of making everyone feel great and start to think of whats best for the contest itself and start by for example invest in some strong new anti-political rules.

        In the matter of Ukraine and Russia I think both should pay. Russia is a huge part of this political madness as well, trying to smear Ukraine in a bad way by presenting Yulia who they knew would get banned and then use the disable card as to up their cause even more.
        I think both of the countries should get a year of ban and return in 2019 again. That way EBU can show that they have some sort of power and maybe reinstate their position in the contest.

        • Nothing Russia did is against any EBU rules. Let’s not go through this again.

          • Nor is Ukraine, cause they clearly cant do anything against it as it is a law in their country. So if it is against some rule, why is not EBU stopping it? Morally it is against the competition, but thats just a policy they have not a solid rule. Im not defending Ukraine in this ban, but im defientely not backing down against the Russian part in this shitstorm as they clearly plays a major part in this ban as well.

            • Laws can be changed, amended or relaxed. On the other hand I can’t see how the EBU can let this stand as precedent for other future hosts.

            • Well having read the letter it seems that the EBU is stronger then we think, however its still just words tbh and a lot of ”maybe’s” in it. Hopefully they can come to an accord in all this and resume the contest as usual and make stronger rules in the future.

              In russias case however, Yulia will get a lot of televotes and I mean a lot. I dare to say even top 5 in the final. Of course the jury will butcher it, but this ”almost ban” (Cause lets be honest, there is no way Ukraine is gonna see this ban through) is gonna help the act a lot im afraid.

            • The EBU has no way to force a sovereign state to change its policy, however it can threaten them with disqualification in the future and this is what it does.

              As for the free publicity, she can thank the hosts for that if she indeed takes part.

  4. I have just read Ms. Deltenre’s letter to the Ukrainian prime minister. Very well done!

    • Very revealing letter. It implies that Ukraine had told the EBU that unless there was a security threat, that they wouldn’t ban anyone.

      Also very eye opening is that they threaten them with a future ESC ban. Had they threatened the ban this year, everything would have been solved already.

      And the icing on the cake is the scolding of both countries for using this as a political “tool.”

      Now they need to be prepared to follow up on heir threats and not fold.

      • What is very revealing is that obviously the EBU decided to leak this letter. They made it public so it means they have no intention to back down.

        Of course Ukraine can’t be banned this year since they are the hosts.

        • We will find out soon enough if they are all bark and no bite.

          • Telling them they would be banned the year they host would have indeed been an empty and silly threat. Also notice the broadcasters chosen to come out against the ban: Denmark and Germany, both important western countries that have hosted succesfully quite recently.

            • This changes everything if the western countries are in on it. The EBU can’t just dismiss it as former soviets sticking together.

              These countries will certainly make the EBU stand up and take notice. Germany gives the EBU plenty of cash.

            • I think that is precisely why they were the ones to give out public statements.

      • Indeed. Let’s hope that the EBU will stand its ground.

  5. I’m torn on this one.

    The show as it is, especially with the new two tiered voting, is way too long and bloated right now. Withdrawals causing a final to have 16 entires or less would be great. But that’s just a dream. I haven’t even watched the voting in full from last year, I just fast forwarded through 99% of it.

    On the other hand, boycotts and withdrawals only hurt the artists of the countries that pull out, they are totally innocent of the politics behind everything. For some, it may be the only chance they get to perform at the show.

    Looking back, did any of the Olympic Game boycotts make any difference besides punishing the athletes that didn’t compete and devaluing the medals the winners won because they didn’t have to face the best of the best?

    The devil in me wants complete chaos though, because the EBU showed a complete lack of leadership and spine in this situation, so there is a power vacuum currently. Had they been truly in charge, they would have found (or forced) a solution. They chose to sit it out instead.

    • What you say about the voting is strange imo because the long voting is an integral part of the show’s identity. I can’t think of anyone at my parents’ party who would like to have it shortened.

    • Actually the voting has shortened by about 10 min, I mean its about 45 min long, but in other years it could go on to about an hour or more.
      The voting has increased tenthfold imo with the new system to make it more fair and far more exciting to watch then in 2012 or 2009 or in any year for that matter. Then we all knew who the winner was before the last country had voted and made it quite disrespectful to the last countries as those points didn’t really matter in the end and was always hurried along, so that they could announce the runaway winner.

      On the other topic, the EBU must act on this situation and stop with the political sweetalk and take actions! Hopefully they will, cause if they do not, then this is gonna get really ugly if other countries gets involved. Future conflicts will arise as they know they can easily push over the EBU and the contest will get more and more political and the essence of Eurovision might get lost in the end.

  6. Is this a letter sent by some caricature soap opera villain character?The tone is disturbing.It’s like blackmailing Ukraine to bend its’ rules in order to serve EBU’s agenda.It’s so wrong in many levels.First off,how can she just refer to SOME countries threatening to withdraw?Name the countries asap.Have you reminded them of your own rules about countries withdrawing at this point of the competition?If this is EBU trying to act as mediator,they have failed in every level.The just act like another aggressor.We should also keep in mind this lady resigned from her post in February and will only serve at her role till June.

  7. Is this a letter sent by some soap opera caricature villain character?The tone is disturbing.So,basically this lady blackmails Ukraine to serve EBU’s agenda or face sanctions.How can she refer to SOME countries threatening to withdraw?Name the countries asap.This is not a tabloid reporting on rumors.This is the EBU director!Have you reminded those unspecified countries of your own rules on late withdrawals?If it’s the EBU’s attempt to act as a mediator,they have failed miserably.They act as another aggressor.We should also keep in mind that this lady has resigned from her post in February and will leave for good in June.

  8. If we weren’t so close to the contest I’d say take Ukraine’s right to host away. They clearly don’t understand the responsibilities of the host country.

  9. Ukraine and Russia both fail to understand the spirit of this contest. Other pairs of countries come in my mind too.
    Unfortunately Ukraine is this year’s host…That’s what makes it sad.
    EBU should take actions, if not this year definitely in 2018

  10. Ukraine will not make any concessions to the Russian contestant Yulia Samoylova, whom the Security Service of Ukraine has banned from entering the country, despite even the possible protest withdrawal of some countries competing in the Eurovision 2017, stated Ukraine Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin speaking at the press-conference after the meeting of NATO-Ukraine Commission in Brussels.
    “No concessions, formal or informal, are discussed, we are talking about the implementation of the law, if the law is violated, we can not talk about any steps,” said Klimkin, answering the journalist’s question whether Samoylova should be allowed to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest In connection with a possible boycott of the competition by other participating broadcaster.

    • ROFL Ukraine’s Foreign Minister commenting this on press conference of NATO Ukraine Commision. They are serioulsly out of touch with the current world and the relevance of ESC in it.
      Bitches, please.

      • Ukraine is doing such damage to ESC. I really want them out next year. :(

      • True,esc in general shouldn’t be part of a NATO press conference but this year’s debate made the headlines.

        • No buts here really. Totally out of line.

          • Who’s out of line?The reporter who posed the question?

            • Reporter who asked and doreign minister who answered. Nor time or place.

            • I don’t see any problem in this,tbh.EBU’S letter made the headlines today so it’s totally understandable the reporter would be asking about it.Pavlo Klimkin is one of the ministers tasked to respond to the EBU’s letter.

            • It’s totally understandable in the world where Kim Kardasians arse related matters are as big news as Brexit. I don’t think ESC belongs to same domain as NATO. A bit old fashioned here, I admit. Then again, if you weaponise ÉSC like Ukrainians did last year, you should go all the way.
              Reporters may ask what they want, you can alwasy turn the questions down.
              Tbh, I’m not surprised at all that this question popped up. How convinient!

      • At least they’re being clear on their motivations and preferred symbolisms. Like Ruslana talking the other day about receiving a “courage” award from the former US First Lady. Apparently there are bad nationalisms we condemn and good ones we give awards to.

        The Financial Times had a good article the other day about ukrainian politicians who are so unpopular lately, they can’t afford to be perceived as “losing face” on their latest patriotic campaign over Russia’s ESC participation. First and foremost, they are hurting their own country and the european image it wanted to project through the contest.


  11. EBU should take very tough stand on this on to save the competition. This is kind of broken now, and if it’s not fixed now it will be worse in the future.

  12. Rather than write a comment, let me share with you a presentation that I made for my final project in one of my uni classes last week.

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