Part of the fabric that makes Eurovision so special is the political ties between countries — often a result of history, culture and other allegiances. These relationships can influence the entry a country submits, as well as see artists submit entries to their aligned neighbours and associates. Think the Ukrainian Alekseev, who is representing Belarus this year. Or even the Greek star Eleni Foureira, who is representing Cyprus.
The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), otherwise known as the Russian Commonwealth, is a confederation of countries which share similar cultures and history as part of the former Soviet Union. Primarily a symbolic relationship between member states, they include Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Associate member states include Turkmenistan and Ukraine.
The CIS members who have participated in Eurovision (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine) have had varying degrees of success. Associate member Ukraine is the most successful, having had two wins since entering the contest (2004 and 2016). Russia had one win in 2008, but has had eight top three finishes. Azerbaijan took the trophy home in 2011. Armenia, Belarus and Moldova have yet to win the contest, but will no doubt be hoping for their first win this year in Lisbon.
Take a listen to all 6 songs of CIS entrants below, and then vote in our poll. As usual you can vote for as many songs as you like, but you can only vote once!