Following mounting pressure from broadcasters across Europe, the European Broadcasting Union has decided to exclude Russia from Eurovision 2022 in Turin. Their full statement follows.
“The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has announced that no Russian act will participate in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest.
“The Executive Board of the EBU made the decision following a recommendation earlier today by the Eurovision Song Contest’s governing body, the Reference Group, based on the rules of the event and the values of the EBU.
“The Reference Group recommendation was also supported by the EBU’s Television Committee.
“The decision reflects concern that, in light of the unprecedented crisis in Ukraine, the inclusion of a Russian entry in this year’s Contest would bring the competition into disrepute.
“Before making this decision the EBU took time to consult widely among its membership.
“The EBU is an apolitical member organization of broadcasters committed to upholding the values of public service.
“We remain dedicated to protecting the values of a cultural competition which promotes international exchange and understanding, brings audiences together, celebrates diversity through music and unites Europe on one stage.”
Russia kicked out of Eurovision Song Contest following Ukraine invasion
The statement comes after broadcasters from across Europe threatened to withdraw from the contest if Russia participated.
On Thursday morning, Finland’s captured the tensions well, saying that it would go against its values to welcome Russia to the stage following the invasion of Ukraine.
Ville Vilén, the director of the broadcaster’s Creative Content and Media Unit, released the following statement.
“Russia’s attack on Ukraine is contrary to all the values that Yle and other European broadcasters represent. Yle always defends Western democracy, the rule of law, freedom of expression and human dignity. Yle cannot take part in an event where Russia, which has blatantly attacked these values, can use one of Europe’s best-known brands to advance its own interests. I hope that the EBU will act in accordance with its values here.”
Prior to the EBU announcement, nine of the 41 participating countries at Eurovision 2022 had asked the EBU to exclude Russia. They were…
You’ll remember that Ukraine’s state broadcaster was the first to call on the EBU to act. On Thursday, Mykola Chernotytsky, the chairman of the board of UA:PBC, issued a strongly-worded statement that said that Russia — “as an aggressor and violator of international law” — should not participate in Eurovision and that its presence “undermines the very idea of the competition” to encourage dialogue and unity.
She also pointed out that Russia’s EBU-affiliated broadcasters are used as mouthpieces for the state and that they “contradict the very idea of public broadcasting and provide informational support to the Kremlin’s illegal activities that threaten peace in Europe and the world.”