Kremlin: Eurovision organizers ‘failed to play by their own rules’
Russia regrets the inability of the Eurovision organizers to make the host country fulfill the song contest rules, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on April 14.
"We can only express regret that Eurovision organizers have failed to fulfill their own rules and to urge the country that had expressed its willingness to host this contest to observe the principles of the host country as outlined by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU)," Peskov said commenting on Ukraine’s entry ban of Russian contestant Yulia Samoilova.
On March 22, Ukraine’s intelligence agency, the SBU, imposed a three-year entry ban on Samoilova over her performance in Crimea in 2015. The European Broadcasting Union said that it was deeply disappointed by Kiev’s decision to ban the Russian contestant from entering Ukraine.
Russian broadcaster Channel One said on April 13 it does not see any possibility to replace Samoilova with some other singer and to broadcast the contest after the EBU’s failure to settle the issue with the Ukrainian authorities.
The 2017 Eurovision Song Contest semifinals will be held in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on May 9 and 11 while the Grand Finale will take place on May 13.