Russia Banned from Eurovision 2022 After Ukraine Invasion
Just one day after the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) announced that Russia would be allowed to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest for 2022, the country is now banned from participating. This follows pressure from broadcasters who objected to the country’s inclusion after this week’s invasion of Ukraine.
Russia Is Now Banned from Eurovision 2022
In a statement Thursday, the EBU called Eurovision a “non-political cultural event” and said artists from Russia would be allowed to participate even after Russian forces invaded Ukraine. They added that they would “continue to monitor the situation closely.”
According to Deadline, the Eurovision Reference Group recommended that Russia be banned from the contest, and the EBU has now announced that no Russian acts will participate. Broadcasters from countries such as Finland, Iceland, and Norway had called for a ban on Russia’s participation.
“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,” the EBU said in a statement. “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.”
Ukraine Responds to Russia’s Ban from the Contest
Following the EBU’s announcement on Friday, the Twitter account Ukraine in Eurovision retweeted the statement and responded with the request that Russia’s EBU membership be suspended.
“Great! We (and the majority of Europe) still expect you to fully suspend their EBU membership,” the account posted, adding the hashtags #EurovisionWithoutRussia, #RussiaInvadedUkraine, and #StopRussia.
Deadline points out that Eurovision isn’t the only event affected by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The Champions League final was moved from St. Petersburg to Paris, and the Russian Grand Prix was canceled.
Ukraine is still participating in this year’s event. The 66th Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Turin, Italy, from May 10 to May 14.