/ Go to the mediabankVolodymyr Zelensky / Go to the mediabankInternationalIndiaAfricaMOSCOW (Sputnik) – The European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the alliance of over 100 broadcasters overseeing the Eurovision Song Contest, has barred Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky from addressing the audience at the final of the contest over politicization concerns, the EBU said on Thursday. “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 EBU said on the website. According to the statement, “the Eurovision Song Contest is an international entertainment show, and governed by strict rules and principles,” with “the non-political nature of the event” being one of the cornerstones of the event. The EBU added that “this principle prohibits the possibility of making political or similar statements as part of the Contest.” BBC is hosting the Eurovision Song Contest this year. According to the statement, the EBU ensured that “the BBC would host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest on behalf of Ukraine’s public broadcaster UA:PBC that Ukraine, its music, its culture, and its creativity would feature strongly throughout all three live shows.” Hosting Eurovision 2023 for Ukraine Could Cost BBC License-Fee Payers £17 Million26 July 2022, 14:00 GMTThe EBU added that at least 11 Ukrainian artists, including last year’s winners Kalush Orchestra, will be performing at the contests. The EBU also said the brand artwork for the event was designed together with a Ukrainian agency, and incidental music for the event was also composed in collaboration with Ukrainian artists. In February 2022, the EBU barred Russia from participating in the song contest as the union was concerned about the Ukraine conflict, and the participation of Russians could damage the reputation of the contest.
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