Haaretz reports that Jon Ola Sand has sent a strongly worded letter to the Israeli Prime Minister urging them to finance security for the Eurovision Song Contest 2019.
Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, Jon Ola Sand has urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel that the Government must fund the security for the Eurovision Song Contest 2019. Mr Sand sent a letter to the Israeli Government today directed to both the Minister of Communications Ayoub Kara and the Minister of Finance Moshe Kahlon, as well as the Israeli Prime Minister. The letter reads;
Further to our meeting on October 28, 2018. You must remember that one of the issues we discussed during the meeting was the issue of security and the need to ensure appropriate measures in the event and its surroundings, As well as the deployment of a sufficient police presence in the public areas.
According to the letter KAN informed the European Broadcasting Union that the Israeli Government has refused so far to cover the costs of security for outside of the arena.
This decision contradicts the understandings reached at the meeting between us in which it was agreed that the funding of security will provide the state and not the broadcasting body, as the promise that the government will cover all security costs outside the hall.
Mr Sand goes on to warn that making KAN finance all aspects of security for the contest will damage the contest in Israel.
If security funding is imposed on KAN, it will damage the quality of work and can lead to real damage to the whole event, the consequences of rejection of safety aspects can be unacceptable … it’s obvious that security measures are an integral part of preparation for Eurovision.
The Executive Supervisor goes on to urge the Government to fund security and of its importance in ensuring that the contest can take place.
The statement of the Israeli government that it will finance the security of the competition will reassure all delegations that are afraid to come to Israel by doing this clearly and decisively.
We are confident that you will agree that the Israeli government cannot shirk its responsibility for ensuring that all necessary security measures are taken during the event, including at the financial level.
The Prime Ministers Office commented to Haaretz that;
The Israeli police are currently working to formulate security needs and costs necessary for organizing Eurovision events in Israel. When this preliminary work is completed, this issue will be carefully considered and the sources of the budget for it will be determined.
The Israeli Government has already had a number of disagreements with the Israeli public broadcaster over the cost of the event and who should fund the competition.