Eurovision 2024: Israeli singer booed during rehearsals

Eurovision 2024: Israeli singer booed during rehearsals
Eurovision 2024: Israeli singer booed during rehearsals

This is the bane of the organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest. Despite the attempts of the EBU (the European Broadcasting Union) to ease tensions, Israel’s participation in the Competition, in the context of the war in Gaza, continues to tarnish its colors despite its slogan “United by music”, and its apolitical vocation.

For several months, voices have been rising against this participation, accompanied by demonstrations throughout Europe and calls for a boycott. Nine candidate countries (including Mustii) also called for a lasting ceasefire.

One month before Eurovision, a candidate threatened with death.

In this context, Israel on Thursday, May 2, advised its citizens against traveling to the Swedish city of Malmö, where the competition is taking place, citing plans to “anti-Israeli protests” and “calls to attack Jews and Israelis”.

A keffiyeh on stage

On stage, as an introduction to the first semi-final show, Swedish-Palestinian singer Eric Saade wore a white keffiyeh on his arm in support of the Palestinian people. A gesture that did not please the organizers, who banned the posting of his performance online.

Eurovision: a gesture did not go unnoticed during the first semi-final

Two demonstrations against Israel’s participation were also authorized by the police in Malmö – where a large Palestinian community resides – this Thursday afternoon and Saturday.

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators are protesting against Israel’s participation in Eurovision this Thursday, May 9 in the semi-final. ©Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

An edition under close surveillance

If the EBU, the body which organizes Eurovision, has never considered the eviction of Israel from the competition, the Israeli delegation nevertheless had to review its copy several times concerning the song which will be performed by its young candidate.

During a rehearsal this Wednesday, on the eve of the semi-final of the competition, the Israeli candidate sang to the boos of the public. Some applause was still heard. “They didn’t silence Eden, and they won’t silence us. They will see us again tomorrow”reacted the Israeli delegation.

Despite the controversy, the young 20-year-old artist Eden Golan, accompanied by an important security system since the death messages received, will present herself well during the second semi-final this Thursday evening with “Hurricane”, with the firm intention of qualify for the grand final on Saturday. How will she be received?

Why is Israel participating?

”The Eurovision Song Contest is open to all members of the European Broadcast Union, which represents broadcasters across Europe and the Middle East. The Israeli public broadcaster has been a member of the EBU since 1957 and has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest for 50 years. The Eurovision Song Contest remains a non-political event that brings people around the world together through music. retorts the EBU on the Competition website to this question asked by a number of Eurofans.

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