Eurovision 2015 may have just wrapped up, but attention is already turning to next year’s edition. And it looks like there’ll be a new face joining the 2016 party – Kosovo. On 23 May, Petrit Selimi, a senior Kosovan politician tweeted the following:
— Petrit Selimi (@Petrit) May 23, 2015
And there is substance to his tweet, as the Kosovans sent a delegation to observe the contest in Vienna. Colour us excited!
Kosovo and Eurovision
The legal position on Kosovo’s statehood remains unclear, which complicates its potential entry to the contest. One of the requirements to become an EBU member is UN membership, which the country doesn’t have. That said, the EBU did make an exception once: Kosovo participated in the 2011 Eurovision Young Dancers contest.
The Kosovarian broadcaster RTK and EBU signed an agreement in 2013, which gave Kosovo the status of observer. Kosovo doesn’t lack possible entries, seeing that there are videos which carry titles like ‘Eurovision Song Contest 2013 Kosovo‘ on Youtube. The Eurovision fanbase in Kosovo is significant and the call for membership from fans could motivate RKT to keep working on its membership.
Of course, with Australia’s recent appearance, lack of full EBU membership may no longer prove a barrier to participation.
Kosovans have competed in the competition before, albeit for other countries. Recent examples include Rona Nishliu for Albania in 2012 and Nevena Bozovic as part of Moje 3 for Serbia in 2013.