Eurovision 2023: EBU refused Zelensky’s request to address the audience at Eurovision 2023!

The 67th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is hosted in Liverpool after last year’s winner, Ukraine, inability to host because of the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war. This year’s Eurovision balances both British and Ukrainian elements. The postcards travel from Ukraine to the United Kingdom while many Ukrainian artists have the chance to take on the stage of the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool.

EBU has published a statement, in which is mentioned that it refused the request made from Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, to address the audience at Eurovision 2023.

More specifically, it is mentioned that:

The Eurovision Song Contest is an international entertainment show, and governed by strict rules and principles which have been established since its creation. As part of these, one of the cornerstones of the Contest is the non-political nature of the event.  

This principle prohibits the possibility of making political or similar statements as part of the Contest.  

The request by Mr Zelensky to address the audience at the Eurovision Song Contest, whilst made with laudable intentions, regrettably cannot be granted by the European Broadcasting Union management as it would be against the rules of the event.  

The best way to reflect and celebrate Ukraine’s win, as it is mentioned by EBU, is through displaying the Ukrainian culture, something that is precisely done by the British production team. Also, this year’s slogan is “United by Music” and indeed music has the power to unite us during hard times.

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