The European Broadcasting Union has confirmed in a statement to Eurovoix that discussions are ongoing with the Belarusian broadcaster BTRC.
In a statement to Eurovoix, the European Broadcasting Union has confirmed that discussions are ongoing between it and BTRC regarding replacing or altering the Belarusian entry for Eurovision 2021. The statement reads:
We are still in discussions with Belarus’ broadcaster BTRC regarding the submission of a new song, or the modification of their current entry, to ensure their act complies with the rules of the Eurovision Song Contest.
The EBU did not state when the deadline was for the Belarusian broadcaster to submit a new or altered song for the contest, or risk being disqualified.
Events in Belarus
In August 2020, the Presidential election in Belarus in which incumbent Alexander Lukashenko was re-elected to a sixth term was the subject of widespread claims of electoral fraud. International monitors have labeled the election neither free nor fair. Following the election, significant and widespread protests have occurred in Belarus.
The Belarusian broadcaster, BTRC, has been subject to a campaign for its removal from the EBU. Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, who stood as the main opposition candidate in the disputed 2020 elections, has given her support to this campaign. Ms. Tsikhanouskaya supports the move due to the financial benefits that BTRC receives from ad revenue, the high ratings of the Eurovision Song Contest, and the prestige it brings to BTRC. Participation in the contest requires a national broadcaster to be a member of the EBU.
The Eurovision Song Contest 2021 will take place on May 18, 20 and 22 in Rotterdam. A total of 41 countries will take part in the Eurovision Song Contest 2021 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Eurovision 2020 was due to be held in Rotterdam after Duncan Laurence gave the Netherlands their first victory since 1975 with the song “Arcade”. After the cancellation of the 2020 contest, it was decided that Rotterdam would host the 2021 contest instead.
Image Source: Mediasat | Source: EBU