The EBU has unanimously voted to extend the interim membership of KAN, the Israeli public broadcaster until December, when KAN’s application for full EBU membership will be voted on.
Earlier this week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed to not split KAN into news and non-news divisions. The split would have prevented KAN from gaining full EBU membership and hosting the Eurovision Song Contest 2019, as the EBU requires all of its members to have news divisions. The EBU welcomed this news, stating that:
“Providing impartial news is one of the core tasks of every public service media organisation.”
The Israel Broadcasting Authority, KAN’s predecessor, was shut down in May 2017. The last television broadcast on IBA was the final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2017, in which Imri Ziv represented Israel with “I’m Alive”. Shortly after the shutdown, KAN signed an agreement with the EBU that would allow KAN to participate in Eurovision events, despite not being a full member. KAN will retain this right until December, which allows them to return to Eurovision Young Musicians for the first time since 1986
Last week, the European Broadcasting Union confirmed that “a handover from RTP (Portugal’s EBU member) took place and a timetable of key milestones was agreed.” Furthermore, planning for next years event has already begun with the host city and the dates for Eurovision 2019 due to be announced “by September.”