It seems that Haifa is out of the hosting race for Eurovision Song Contest 2019 according to the Israeli news portal Walla.co.il. The article suggests the municipality did not submit their application on time. Therefore tree cities remain in the race, with Tel Aviv as the front runner.
The Haifa municipality received a response from the broadcaster KAN, saying KAN had not received any application to host Eurovision 2019, that they therefore assume Haifa is not interested in hosting the contest and that they wish them all the best. The Haifa mayor Yona Yahav stated that Haifa is still in the race and refused to comment on the matter further.
According to the news portal, this leaves three cities left in the race, with Tel Aviv being the front runner, with the second pavillion of the Convention Centre as the proposed venue. Tel Aviv municipality has offered to improve the public transport, especially to increase the amount of taxi lines in order to make the transport to the venue easier and also allow the rehearsals and the live shows to be held on the Sabbath. Tel Aviv is also suitable due to the proposed Eurovillage being close to the venue.
Jerusalem has the suitable venue, but the question about rehearsals and live shows being held during the Sabbath is still a persisting issue. Sources close to KAN reveal, that the Jerusalem representatives are still examining the issue, which is one of EBU’s main conditions in order to host the contest. The Jerusalem municipality spokesperson did not give the concrete answer whether the city would agree to proceed with the preparations of the contest during the Sabbath, but instead replied that the Sabbath is an issue not only for Jerusalem, but for the whole State of Israel, therefore giving the impression that Jerusalem is not keen on having rehearsals during the Sabbath, thus automatically being unsuitable to host the contest.
Eliat is also in the race, but the article suggests its chances are slim.
Where do you think the contest will take place? Do you think Haifa eventually applied on time? Are you Team Tel Aviv or Team Jerusalem? Let us know in the comments below or on social media as @ESCXTRA.