The EBU has released a statement about Russia’s participation to the Eurovision Song Contest 2017:
It has been confirmed to the EBU that the Ukrainian authorities have issued a travel ban on the Russian artist chosen for the Eurovision Song Contest, Julia Samoylova, as she has been judged to have contravened Ukrainian law by entering Crimea in order to perform.
We have to respect the local laws of the host country, however we are deeply disappointed in this decision as we feel it goes against both the spirit of the Contest, and the notion of inclusivity that lies at the heart of its values.
We will continue a dialogue with the Ukrainian authorities with the aim of ensuring that all artists can perform at the 62nd Eurovision Song Contest in Kyiv in May.
- Source: eurovision.tv
It was to expect that Ukraine wouldn’t let Russia compete in a contest held in their country, since they have been political rivals for the last few years now. I think it’s a good thing that the EBU is willing to solve this issue because the Eurovision Song Contest shouldn’t become entirely political. I mean, politics are always involved. Some countries always give points to each other and others never do, so it’s never not there. But right now with Ukraine and Russia it seems like a game. I think Russia wouldn’t just pick a representative without doing full research on them. So obviously they must have known about the ban on Julia Samoylova. Choosing her was just provocation. And the Ukrainian authorities just took the opportunity to dismiss Russia from the Eurovision Song Contest.
On the 23nd of March, the EBU announced the following:
Taking into consideration that this ban might be upheld by the Ukrainian authorities, and in order to maintain the non-political nature of the Eurovision Song Contest, the EBU has been working hard to find a solution to this situation and has taken the unprecedented move to offer Channel One Russia the opportunity for Julia to still participate in this year’s Contest by performing live in the 2nd Semi Final via satellite. Should the Russian entry qualify for the Grand Final the same solution would apply.
- Source: eurovision.tv
I don’t like this at all. This is just going to ruin the whole competition. Russia will get a lot of attention for entering via satellite. And I don’t think that’s a good thing. I think Russia is just being stubborn here, because they could easily pick another contestant. I mean, the EBU would accept their late choice because of the circumstances so I don’t think there would be any problems. I just think they don’t want to give in, which I believe they really should because I think that entering via satellite will completely ruin their credibility in the competition. If they take this opportunity and still enter with Julia Samoylova, I don’t see Russia entering for a very long time afterwards. I just think the whole satellite thing is going to backfire and people will say it’s not fair that Russia has that something special. I don’t really know who to blame in this issue. Russia shouldn’t have picked her because of the ban but Ukraine shouldn’t have made a fuss about it either. I know these countries don’t like each other, but to be honest I think Russia should have avoided all these problems by just withdrawing for one year. Armenia did it in 2012 when the competition was held in Azerbaijan, so I don’t see why Russia wouldn’t do it this year. Them entering now is going to give so much more problems, believe me. This is not the end in my opinion.