Eurovision 2017 – Yesterday saw the confirmation by Russia that it will not take part in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. The EBU has been unable to broker any srt of agreement between Ukraine and Russia over the participation of Yulia Samoilova.
The EBU released the following statement:
“Following the official confirmation that Russian Eurovision entrant, Julia Samoylova, will not be permitted to travel to Kyiv to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest 2017, the EBU formally offered two alternative proposals to Channel One in a bid to find a solution that would enable Russia to continue their participation in this year’s event.
“These proposals were to either take part via satellite or to change their chosen artist to one who could legally travel to Ukraine for the duration of the Contest. Sadly both proposals have been rejected by Channel One and they have now announced they do not intend to broadcast the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. Unfortunately this means Russia will no longer be able to take part in this year’s competition. We very much wanted all 43 countries to be able to participate and did all we could to achieve this.”
Furthermore, the Chairman of the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group, Frank Dieter Freiling stated:
“We strongly condemn the Ukrainian authorities’ decision to impose a travel ban on Julia Samoylova as we believe it thoroughly undermines the integrity and non-political nature of the Eurovision Song Contest and its mission to bring all nations together in friendly competition. However, preparations continue apace for the Eurovision Song Contest in the host city Kyiv. Our top priority remains to produce a spectacular Eurovision Song Contest with our Member UA:PBC in May.”
Russian TV station Russia One will now not show the contest this year. No other Russian channel has said it will show it either, with RTR saying they will boycott it “in solidarity with Channel One”.
The Russian Head of Delegation is said t have stated “This is a stupid folly, which says nothing good about people who rule Ukraine”.
It is expected that Yulia Samoilova will be the Russian representative in 2018 now instead.