Eurovision says some contestants did not respect ‘spirit of rules’ after controversial competition | Ents & Arts News

The organiser of the Eurovision Song Contest has said it “regrets” that some contestants did not respect the “spirit of the rules” when taking part in the competition in Sweden.

In a statement on Monday, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) said it had spoken to a number of delegations during the event regarding what it referred to as “various issues that were brought to our attention”.

It comes after Ireland’s Bambie Thug said they had raised “multiple complaints” to the EBU in the build up to the grand finale in the city of Malmo on Saturday after accusing Israeli broadcaster, Kan, of a rule breach.

The Irish performer accused the Israeli broadcaster of “inciting violence” against them three times and added they were waiting for the EBU to respond.

Bambie – who finished sixth with their gothic song Doomsday Blue – had repeatedly criticised the involvement of Israel’s representative, Eden Golan, who came fifth in the competition, given the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict.

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Bambie Thug: ‘My favourite non-binary won’

The EBU said this week its governing bodies will work with the heads of delegations to review the events that took place at this year’s Eurovision and “move forward in a positive way and to ensure the values of the event are respected by everyone”.

“Individual cases will be discussed by the event’s governing body, the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group, made up of representatives from participating broadcasters, at its next meeting,” it said.

Nemo of Switzerland, who performed the song The Code, celebrates after winning the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmo, Sweden, Sunday, May 12, 2024. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
Nemo celebrates after winning the Eurovision Song Contest. Pic: AP

The 68th edition of the annual song contest was won by Nemo from Switzerland – the first non-binary performer to take the trophy.

But the week of the competition was marred by controversy, after the disqualification of The Netherlands’s contestant Joost Klein who was stopped from taking part over an “incident” where he was alleged to have made verbal threats to a female production worker.

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A Pro-Palestinian demonstration ahead of the second semi-final at the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmo
A Pro-Palestinian demonstration ahead of the second semi-final at the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmo. Pic: AP

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It was the first time in Eurovision history that an act has been disqualified after reaching the grand final.

Meanwhile, around 10,000-12,000 people, including Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, took to the streets of Malmo across the weekend to call for Israel to be excluded from the contest.

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Numerous contestants – including Lithuania, France and Portugal – also tentatively brought politics to the stage after performing in the final, with all of them commenting on the importance of peace.

Israel’s Ms Golan told Sky News after the contest she had ignored all the controversy and was “over the moon” about coming fifth in the competition.

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