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Ukraine drops its Eurovision entrant over Russia row

Ukraine drops its Eurovision entrant over Russia row

Singer MARUV in the stage performance of Siren Song

Ukraine’s entrant for the Eurovision Song Contest was dropped yesterday (26 February) over a political row between her county and Russia.

Maruv won a public vote to represent Ukraine in Israel with Siren Song.

But the singer later fell out with Ukraine’s national broadcaster, UA:PBC, and was given 24 hours to sign a contract or else be banned from participating.

The broadcaster then revoked Maruv’s nomination after talks stalled on Monday (25 February).

‘I am a musician’

The 27-year-old, real name Anna Korsun, said stipulations in the contract amounted to ‘censorship.’

‘I am a citizen of Ukraine, pay taxes and sincerely love Ukraine,’ she wrote on Facebook.

‘But I am not ready to address [people] with slogans, turning my participation in the contest into the promotion of our politicians.

‘I am a musician, rather than a bat at the political stage.’

While the singer was willing to cancel her next tour of Russia as part of the contract, she said: ‘I want to give my creativity without censorship.

‘Tomorrow, I will wake up with new forces to win and popularize my music in the world.’

Singers speak society 

But a UA:PBC representative said signing the contract means ‘commitments’ to become a ‘cultural ambassador’ and deliver ‘the opinion of the Ukrainian society.’

They added: ‘After the negotiations, UA:PBC and the singer Maruv have not found common ground in the mission of the representative of Ukraine at the international song contest.’

Maruv’s entry song Siren Song, tallied over 1.4 million views on YouTube.

Meanwhile, it is unclear whether UA:BC have come to an agreement with Freedom Jazz, who placed second.

Why are Ukraine and Russia relations bad?

Ukraine gained independance from Russia in 1991.

However, Russia views a Western-leaning Ukraine a threat.

Ukraine overthrew its then pro-Russia leader in 2014.

This ignited pubic protests.

Shortly after, as Russia-backed separatists moved against the Ukrainian state in the east, conflict ensued.

Ukraine hosted Eurovision in 2017 and barred Russia’s entrant from performing at the event.

This Eurovision will run from 14 May – 18 May.

See also

6,000 people march for LGBTI equality in Kiev, Ukraine

10 men brutally attack gay activist ahead of Ukraine Pride parade

Would Brexit affect UK taking part in the Eurovision Song Contest?