There are many voices in Lebanon supporting the country’s participation in the Eurovision Song Contest. Lebanon, which after the dramatic events of the summer, the peace processes with Israel, but also the active involvement of French President Macron in the new situation that is being created, seems more ready for its Europeanization and the necessary changes that will be called to make. by the new government. A pleasant surprise was today the statement of the president of the Lebanese industrialists, one of the most powerful men in the country, for a possible participation of his country in the Eurovision contest.
“Eurovison participation seems very logical”
Dr. Fady Gemayel is the President of the Lebanese Manufacturers Association (AIL) and since last June the President of the European Corrugated Board Manufacturers Association (FEFCO). In today’s interview in view of the second visit of the French President Em. Macron, Fady Gemayel also refers to the Eurovision contest and a possible participation of Lebanon there.
Lebanon’s participation in Eurovision is not an absurd idea in my mind.
A peace agreement with Israel paves the way for Eurovision
What prevents all the Arab states of the Mediterranean, which are also members of the EBU, from participating in the Eurovision Song Contest, is the lack of diplomatic relations with Israel.
All these countries did not recognize Israel, forbidding some of them even Israeli citizens to visit their countries.
Israel’s peace agreement with the UAE, as well as the mobility prevailing in Lebanon and other Middle Eastern countries in this direction, gives hope for a possible debut in the Eurovision Song Contest.
Lebanon in the Eurovision Song Contest
In October 2004, Lebanese public television Télé Liban, a member of the EBU, announced that it intended to take part in the next Eurovision Song Contest to be held in Kiev.
On November 3, 2004, it was announced that the first representative of the country in the competition would be Aline Lahoud, who had been selected for this purpose by internal selection.
Shortly before Christmas, however, Télé Liban announced that it was withdrawing from the tender due to financial problems, while denying that the reason for their decision was his country’s relations with Israel. But the EBU came to an agreement with Télé Liban and so when the official list of participating countries was announced, Lebanon was among them.
In mid-February, the song with which Aline Lahoud would compete in Kiev was released. It was a French song with an ethnic melody and the title “Quand tout s’enfuit”.
The fact that Lebanon did not list Israel on its official public television website among the participating countries led the EBU to seek official assurance from Télé Liban that it would broadcast Israel’s participation normally.
Télé Liban replied that this was not possible as it was prohibited by the law of the country, any promotion of anything related to Israel and thus announced on its official website that it is permanently withdrawing from the competition.
It is forbidden to broadcast Israel’s participation, which is contrary to the regulations of Eurovision 2005. Therefore, we announce our withdrawal from the competition.
As the decision to withdraw from the competition came after 15 December, the date on which it was possible to leave a country without a fine, the EBU imposed a fine on Télé Liban and a penalty of exclusion from all Eurovision events until 2008. .
In late 2007, the famous Lebanese singer Mika announced that he was interested in representing his country in the 2008 competition, with another country channel, which was not bound by the EBU penalty imposed on Télé. Lebanon. But for this to happen, this television station would first have to become a member of the EBU. In the end, Mika’s dreams did not come true and Lebanon has never been interested in taking part in the competition since, due to its war situation with Israel.
Will a possible peace agreement between the two countries bring Lebanon to the Eurovision Song Contest?