The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign have launched a campaign for Ireland to boycott the Eurovision Song Contest 2019.
The campaign was launched at the Ha’penny Bridge in Dublin today. Also backing the boycott are the Musicians’ Union of Ireland, the trade union for musicians, singers and music professionals, and Irish Equity, the trade union for actors, dancers, directors, and stage and set builders and designers. A petition calling for a boycott also gathered almost 3,500 signatures.
Among the protesters today was Carrie Crowley, who hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 1997, when it was last held in Ireland. Speaking at the launch, Crowley said:
“There’s a resonance with the situation in Palestine for Irish people because in our past we were disenfranchised and taken over by a superior power. We understand what it’s like to be evicted from homes, to lose our land and properties and feel like we’ve no entitlements anymore. Our relationship with Great Britain has improved so much and I would love to think Palestine and Israel could look to the future and maybe do something similar. I want to raise awareness of this as there’s so many people who love Eurovision and we could draw their attention to it.”
The campaign launch comes a week after comments from Simon Coveney, Deputy Prime Minister, in which he rejected calls for a boycott, saying that it would not “advance the cause of Palestinians”.
RTÉ have yet to confirm Irish participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019. Should they choose to withdraw, it would be Ireland’s first absence from the contest since 2002.
Ryan O’Shaughnessy represented Ireland in Lisbon this year with the song “Together”. He finished 16th in the final with 136 points. This was Ireland’s first appearance in the final since 2013 and their best result since 2012.
Source: Irish News
Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest
Ireland debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1965 and is currently the most successful country to have participated in the contest, winning a total of seven times. During the 1990s Ireland was a powerhouse in the contest becoming the first country to win three years in a row from 1992 to 1994. Since 2000 Ireland has struggled in the contest having qualified from the semi-final into the final just six out of a possible 13 times. Ireland’s last top 10 result came in 2011 when Jedward finished 8th in Dusseldorf.