The drama’s been unfolding since MARUV‘s announcement that she won’t be representing Ukraine in Tel Aviv. After much speculation, and refusals from fellow other Vidbir finalists KAZKA and Freedom Jazz to take her place – Ukraine have now taken the inevitable action of announcing its withdrawal from Eurovision 2019.

The EBU has now released an official statement regarding Ukraine’s withdrawal.  The statement itself is high-level and not detail-specific, failing to address the rumoured contractual disagreements between MARUV and the broadcaster UA:PBC, which led to MARUV’s refusal to represent Ukraine at Eurovision. They will, however, work with UA:PBC to see Ukraine return to the contest in 2020.

You can read the EBU’s statement in its entirety below.

Official EBU Statement

Each participating broadcaster is responsible for the selection of their act for the Eurovision Song Contest in accordance to the rules set out by the European Broadcasting Union. It is with sadness that the EBU can confirm that Ukraine’s broadcaster UA:PBC has informed the EBU that, following further discussions, they have made the difficult decision to withdraw from the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest. There will be further discussions between the EBU and UA:PBC on this matter but we hope to see them again in 2020. However, for now, we look forward to what is already shaping up to be a fantastic event in Tel Aviv in May.

Following the release of the brief statement, Eurovision fans took to Twitter – and honey, they did not hold back.

Twitter reacts

What do you think? Now that the drama seems to be reaching its conclusion, has justice has been done for UA:PBC and for MARUV? Let us know in the comments what you would like to see happen next!

Follow all of our Ukraine Eurovision 2019 news.

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Jake
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Jake

no. we don’t.

Bart
Guest
Bart

It would be better if UA:PBC withdraws and let another tv station take over, why must UA:PBC organise the event for Ukraine?

Slava
Guest
Slava

Fully agree, the problem comes from UA:PBC. Also what a silly organisation: selection is subcontracted to another channel

Alex
Guest
Alex

Ukraine, their artists and the audience are not the problem. The problem here were UA:PBC and politicians. It’s ridiculous how a minority with power can ruin things in a really short period of time. Hope Ukraine can get rid of them.

beccaboo1212
Guest

I’m also hoping for Ukraine to come back in 2020. 🙁 Hopefully be at Junior Eurovision 2019. 🙁

Pirate515
Guest
Pirate515

Let’s see if Russia wins. If they do, Ukraine is probably sitting next year out as well.
Maybe Maruv will be back again next year, for another country if she changes her mind. I’m sure she will have a few offers again.

Héctor
Guest
Héctor

Doesn’t they sound pathetic? At this point the EBU only care about the money. As one tweet says: I’m disappointed but not surprised.

Brexitny Spears
Guest
Brexitny Spears

You live by a sward…

Denis
Guest
Denis

Lol, a lot of Russian bots writing how Russia will win!
Paid by Putin are we? Heard the song yet?
Don’t come to conclusions…

Pirate515
Guest
Pirate515

Exactly. Let’s hear Sergey’s song, watch the video and stage act(s) before speculating what his chances are this year. Although I hope he brings something good.

Gurl
Guest
Gurl

Tbh, I’m quite surprised by unprofessionalism of broadcasters who organized that selection.. How much money and energy is wasted for nothing.. They let themselves be publicly exposed for what they doing, how do we know that others don’t do the same or similar thing? The difference is this happened in front of public eyes.. Although I’m very glad that artists showed their solidarity and integrity, can’t say I’m cheering for this, because the whole situation is so sad.. Greets to Ukrainian fans and hope to see them next year <3

Simon
Guest
Simon

STB is fine though, their organisation was top notch and in the end, they criticized the culprit, UA:PBC for politicising of the contest.

Skimur
Guest
Skimur

Broadcaster and organizer are two different TV channels.

West
Guest
West

“There will be further discussions between EBU and UA:PBC on this matter…”
I don’t know about you, but that sounds pretty ominous to me. They might as well write “We hope to see them again, buuuuuut…”

Porsteinn
Guest
Porsteinn

That literally can mean anything. From convincing them to take part in 2019 to a ban in 2020 to nothing at all. I would put my money on the latter.

West
Guest
West

True – it can mean anything. But my guess is that EBU wants to know how will UA:PBC procede the next year to avoid such situation. But most likely they’ll talk about money.

zelenovi
Guest
zelenovi

I think this is probably more related to possible fines. AFAIK the rules state broadcasters have to pay a fine if they withdraw close to the contest. Should be an interesting discussion though given the financial state of UA:PBC…

Wilhelm
Guest
Wilhelm

I assume no Vidbir next year… maybe small selection TV show, organized by UA:PBC.
STB is too pro-russian to do it correctly.
And we will not see Andrii Danylko in judging panel, because he cannot speak Ukrainian, while UA:PBC should only create programs/support Ukrainian or Crimean Tatar languages.

Wilhelm
Guest
Wilhelm

RIP Vidbir, I liked and hated you in the same time

Vova
Guest
Vova

Very clever… half of Ukraine is not able to speak Ukrainian… Think before you write

Wouter
Guest
Wouter

Oh well, let’s look at the positives. At least there will be a lucky country in Semi Final 1 that will make it to the Grand Final that otherwise wouldn’t have done because Ukraine would have surely qualified.

Sokratis Lakrindis
Guest
Sokratis Lakrindis

I’m confused, there is no legitimate reason they cannot compete, besides political disagreement. So why do they just get a free pass to pull this garbage in 2020? 2016 – jamala allowed to perform a clearly political song and win, 2017 – bans Russia from participation due to crimes connections. No problem 2019 – allows a national final to occur, without informing the contestants or the public of the conditions until AFTER the contest. Takes televote $$$ and wastes all contestants time and $$$ spent on efforts, and withdraw. And once again no ban? I’d love to have Ukraine compete… Read more »

Hermès
Guest
Hermès

And the award for most useless organization goes to…

The contract for the artist to go to Eurovision contained political requests (not touring Russia) as well as rules forcing the artist to comply with every obligation UA:PBC would have, especially towards journalists. How can consider EBU such kind of contract are tolerable? And that it’s not their problem what kind of obligations artists have to agree on to participate at Eurocision ?

Shamelessness and cowardice.

James
Guest
James

I would say that the terms of the contract were ambiguous and double barrelled. That was a canny move. Maruv is really a smart lady and she knew that if she were in ESC, she would have fined for every inconsiderable action.

Pirate515
Guest
Pirate515

Very true. At the very least, if they wanted to impose this draconian contract, they should have presented it to Vidbir contestants prior to entry. At least if anyone would have signed it in advance, no one would have had the grounds to complain (but then again, we’d probably see a bunch of Ukrainian William Hung clones in Vidbir instead of the artists whom we did see).

gandalf
Guest
gandalf

EBU does’t need music. They play political games. Now they support Poroshenko. It’s just disgusting.

Magistr
Guest
Magistr

Russian troll, why are you still not happy? Its time to party for you

Dawid
Guest
Dawid

I hope this major broadcaster we heard about will take over Eurovision preselections next year.

About Jamala, I’m glad we can finally agree that what she brings to Eurovision is politic, conflicts and nothing more. When she won and I said it’s political, everyone jumped on me and called me hater and now look at her. Just because someone won, doesn’t matter their song/performance was the best. Just look for reactions of people who haven’t watched eurovision before, who hear that she won. It’s either uncomfortable smile or “how possibly have she won with all these great songs around?”.

James
Guest
James

Everything was covert that year, and no one could prove that her song had a political context. And now she showed her true face.

Dawid
Guest
Dawid

She was singing about “Russian” attack on Crimea after Russia took over Crimea, right?

James
Guest
James

Right

UwU
Guest
UwU

I’m sorry but this was to be expected… In the past few years, a handful of national selections have experienced serious accusations of rigging, some of them leading to the EBU having to address issues of the like for those countries’ media. The answer has ALWAYS been the same: As long as a representative exists for a country before the official deadline (not even that, they just have to broadcast the show) they don’t get involved in preselections, ever. And it only makes kind of sense when you come to realize that a rigged national final is not really different… Read more »

Hermès
Guest
Hermès

But the problem here wasn’t the preselection. It was the contract for Eurovision itself. That’s why EBU should get involved.

ESCJudge
Guest
ESCJudge

Yes, but people can not blame unnamed (who wrote the contract), so they blame Jamala.
That, beside the contract, is also disgusting.
Jamala is not a problem.
Lack of rules is.

sunny
Guest
sunny

The sad part is that what Ukraine did is exactly what Putin wanted. They hate Russia, but look what they did to themselves. They gave Putin exactly what he was hoping for.

Tomas Davitt
Guest
Tomas Davitt

Thats the sad part. Now they have no cultural ambassador at all and their voice and presence is lost this year at Eurovision completely

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr. Vanilla Bean

You know, whenever I read or hear the term “EBU”, regardless of the contest, I just automatically breathe a sigh of exasperation. They’re like the Vatican of the media world, they just have to get everything wrong.

Loin dici
Guest

I don’t know if change of HoD is enougv
h, but UAPBC should reconsider everything if they want to participate again.

Jurgis
Guest
Jurgis

I hope Ukraine will withdraw and redirect membership fees towards military help to the Ukrainian army. OldProstituteVision should not be a priority during war.

Naza
Guest
Naza

Good thing they’ll instead have to pay fines to the EBU for withdrawing after confirming their participation!

Jurgis
Guest
Jurgis

I can’t see any reason for continuation their membership. Europe has grown increasingly pro-Russian. It’s better to get agreements with the US, not old ugly prostotutes

Lady Gagarina
Guest
Lady Gagarina

How sad for you…trusting the US? You probably have not studied history where the US can quickly refuse support if it doesn’t serve their purpose. If the US was truly supporting Ukraine or Georgia, why are parts of their land under occupation? The US will only invade if there is oil LOL In the grand scheme of things, Ukraine is but a pawn, it can be sacrificed anytime when the West & the US see no purpose for it

Vladimir P.
Guest
Vladimir P.

Ukraine denying its own responsibility for anything and trying to position itself as a victim of everyone will take the country and people nowhere.

Tops
Guest
Tops

EBU should ban them from next year, at least!

James
Guest
James

UA:PBC haven’t submitted a song and artist yet ahead of the deadline, and now they never will this year. The EBU will only take action after the submission and/or if the broadcaster has outstanding debts to the broadcasters’ union that goes beyond Eurovision participation.

I still expect to see them in JESC this year at the very least.

Lolek
Guest
Lolek

baw my comment has been blocked.. I think it happens because I mentioned the name of the artist from iceland, haha.

Lolek
Guest
Lolek

No real justice but it was the inevitable conclusion to one of the most dramatic Eurovision moments of the decade. Sucks not to have Maruv but at this point I’m happy this whole business is done with.

Now we can focus on the remaining songs/artists to be revealed! Personally I’m hoping Keiino for Norway and Hatari for Iceland are selected! I desperately need a standout entry to fill out my #1 favourite song spot. 🙂

Currikitaum
Guest
Currikitaum

EBUseless tbh…

Dawid
Guest
Dawid

I mean, if nothing changes about broadcaster, they’ll make mess in 2020 as well… Is that what you hope to see again EBU?

James
Guest
James

ESCKAZ shared details of recent meetings made between members of the government and the public broadcaster that happened this week following the issue’s unfolding. Issues such as whether to continue allowing Ukrainian artists to work in Russia were raised as well as possibly placing those artists in a special registry, as well as improving the casting process in getting acts for future editions of Vidbir (although there was no mention of any future co-production ventures with STB). The government, as it should, will not interfere with the affairs of the broadcaster with whatever steps they will eventually take, although given… Read more »

Lady Gagarina
Guest
Lady Gagarina

“Issues such as whether to continue allowing Ukrainian artists to work in Russia were raised as well as possibly placing those artists in a special registry” – if they outright ban them, then the artists will be broke & die of starvation as Ukraine’s music market is such a pittance & small, ravaged by piracy. If they want their artists not to perform in Russia, then they should be able to provide livelihood for them or alternative source of income.

Joseph Shaulov
Guest
Joseph Shaulov

That’s all we need. Sergey to win

Goddess
Guest
Goddess

He lost once and he will lose again.