Earlier today, the EBU released an official statement updating us on the issue regarding the travel ban issued by Ukraine to Russian participant Julia Samoylova. The statement revealed that the EBU would offer Julia the opportunity to perform her entry Flame Is Burning via a satellite link in order to celebrate “the spirit of Eurovision’s values of inclusivity, and this year’s theme of Celebrate Diversity”. In the last few minutes, Russian broadcaster Channel One Russia have responded to the offer.
“Channel One has acted in full accordance with the rules”
In a statement released by Channel One Russia, and translated by ESCKAZ.com, they say the following:
“Channel One has acted in full accordance with the rules of the Eurovision Song Contest and chose the participant of the contest, who is duly registered by the EBU and remains the current contestant. According to the rules of the Eurovision Song Contest, the host broadcasting country should provide all participants ‘the ability to acquire an entrance visa for the entire duration of the event’.”
“Thus, Julia Samoylova’s ban to enter the territory of Ukraine violates the rules of the contest. We consider the proposal of remote participation strange and reject it, since it, of course, contradicts the very meaning of the event, the strict rule of which is the live performance on the stage of the Eurovision Song Contest.”
“We believe that the European Broadcasting Union should not invent new rules for the Russian participant in 2017 and is able to hold a competition in accordance with its own existing rules”.
Of course, this means that Russia have rejected the offer made by the EBU earlier this afternoon. Channel One maintains that Julia should be able to perform her song live in Kyiv as she has not broken any of the contest’s rules.
What do you make of the latest events regarding this situation? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below and via our social media pages @escXtra.