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Under BDS pressure, Israel to host Eurovision in Tel Aviv not Jerusalem

September 14, 2018 at 3:57 pm

People take their seats as the Eurovision song contest begins [fotospielwiese/Flickr]

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) announced that the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest will be held in Tel Aviv and not in Jerusalem following worldwide criticism and fear of boycotts.

After Israel won this year’s contest, it announced that it would hold the next competition in Jerusalem next year, sparking global criticism with calls for boycotts.

Fearing a global boycott campaign against the musical contest, Israel announced it will be held in Tel Aviv.

Jon Ola Sand, EBU’s Executive Supervisor for the Eurovision Song Contest, said in a statement that Tel Aviv was chosen to host the song contest, because of its “creative and compelling bid”.

Read: Palestinian cultural groups urge Eurovision to boycott Israel

Sand emphasised: “We’d like to thank all the Israeli cities who bid to host the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest, and although all the bids were exemplary, in the end we decided that Tel Aviv provides the best overall setup for the world’s largest live music event.”

The Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality praised EBU’s announcement. “The city is pleased to officially announce that the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest will be held in Tel Aviv. The city is Israel’s financial and cultural centre, an international hub of art and creativity, of commerce and trade, of media and academia.”

The municipality added that “according to data gathered from previous host cities, around 20,000 tourists are expected to visit Tel Aviv, which will gain an estimated of 100 million shekels ($28,033,900) in direct revenues.”

Global artists call for a boycott on Eurovision in solidarity with Palestinians – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]