Ukraine's Public Broadcasting Channel (UA:PBC) has stated that Ukraine won't take part in Eurovision 2019. This comes after the singer MARUV who won the national selection process has declined taking part in the song contest deeming the contract she was given to sign a "violation of human rights" and an "attempt to force her to withdraw."
"The National selection 2019 program has detected and drawn attention of our society to the systemic problem within the music industry in Ukraine: artists' ties with show business on the territory of the aggressor country," UA:PBC's statement reads. "Part of the society is ok with that fact, the other part finds it offensive and unacceptable."
The opportunity to represent Ukraine at Eurovision 2019 was then given to the two acts that came second and third in the national selection process: bands Freedom Jazz and KAZKA. But they declined also. Freedom Jazz did not explicitly state the reason, while KAZKA said that they would want to go but don't want to do so at the cost of "disseminating strife."
MARUV (real name Hanna Korsun) – who won the final of the national selection on February 24 – has been regularly going to Russia for concerts and has more performances planned, including a solo one in Moscow in April. Many Ukrainians discussed this fact online finding it unacceptable.
Korsun also seemed to downplay the fact that Russia is at war with Ukraine where over 13,000 people have now died in the east.
"Fighting for peace is like f**king for virginity. Nothing can ever be solved with fighting," Korsun told Ukrainian news site Telegid in a video comment. She also explained during the national selection that her work in Russia is her attempt to "bring peace" to the two countries.
/By Maria Romanenko