Russia is out of Eurovision after the host nation, Ukraine said it would refuse entry to the Russian contestant.
Russia will not be taking part in Eurovision 2017 after the Ukraine banned its entry, Julia Samoylova from entering the country. According to the EBU two solutions were offered to Russia’s Eurovision broadcast partner, Channel One and both were vetoed. Russia first performed at the Eurovision in 1994. This will be the first time it has not taken part in the competition.
In a statement, the EBU said that Julia could take part via satellite or change their chosen artist to one that could legally travel to the Ukraine for the competition.
The EBU stated,
“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”.
Why Did The Ukraine Ban Russia’s Eurovision Entry?
Ukraine law forbids entering Crimea in order to perform. According to sources around 140 other Russian artists have been blacklisted by the SBU following the annexation of Crimea last year. Julia Samoylova is one of those artists as she had previously travelled to Crimea to perform.
Russia and Ukraine have been in dispute since the annexation of Crimea and the fighting in east Ukraine.
Frank Dieter Freiling, Chairman of the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group, the event’s steering committee, said,
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“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.”