Yesterday the Belarusian broadcaster BTRC released their entry for Eurovision Song Contest 2021. Quickly after the song was released, a new petition was launched, insisting the EBU to withdraw Belarus from this year’s contest.
This is not the first time a campaign has been launched to remove the Belarusian broadcaster BTRC from the 2021 contest. The Belarusian Foundation for Cultural Solidarity launched a campaign against the Belarusian state broadcaster earlier this year. The Foundation has requested that the country is not only removed from the competition, but also have its broadcasting rights and membership from the Union revoked. Swedish political party Liberalerna have also started a petition to exclude BTRC from the upcoming contest.
A new petition has been launched, mainly by Eurovision fans, insisting the EBU should withdraw the Belarusian entry from this year’s contest. The petition, launched yesterday, has already reached over 1000 signatures. The petition states that the song Galasy ZMesta is set to perform at Eurovision Song Contest has an obvious political subtext.
Last month, the European Broadcasting Union responded to a letter sent by Belarusian Culture Solidarity Foundation. In their response, the EBU’s Director General Noel Curran stresses, that the “Eurovision Song Contest is a music competition with no political agenda”. He says that “(the EBU) consistently and vigorously resists attempts for this cultural event to be instrumentalised for political ends”.
Previously, IIHF, the International Ice Hockey Federation, decided to strip Belarus of their hosting rights for the upcoming Ice Hockey World Championship. Yesterday, the Swedish broadcaster SVT announced that Belarus would be one of the eight countries included in the international jury for the final of Melodifestivalen 2021, but later that day Belarus was replaced by the United Kingdom.
ESCXTRA.com will keep you updated on the situation as it develops.