Eurovision organizers ask Belarus to change song
The organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest have asked Belarus's National State Television and Radio Company (BTRC) to change its song due to concerns that it casts doubt over the contest's "non-political nature."
"As part of the regular procedure for all songs submitted to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC), the EBU [European Broadcasting Union] has carefully scrutinized the Belarusian song Ya Nauchu Tebya (I'll Teach You) by Galasy ZMesta to ensure it complies with the rules of the competition. It was concluded that the song puts the non-political nature of the contest in question," a statement from the organizers said.
"[The EBU has] written to the broadcaster BTRC, which is responsible for Belarus's entry for the Eurovision Song Contest, to inform them that the song, in its present form, is currently not eligible to compete," it said.
"Furthermore, we've requested that they take all necessary steps to submit a modified version, or a new song, that is compliant with the ESC rules," the statement said.
Belarus will be represented by the band Galasy ZMesta, which earlier presented a number of satirical songs, including about national opposition leaders Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, Pavel Latushko, and Maria Kolesnikova.
The contest, which was cancelled last year due to the pandemic, will be held at the Arena Ahoy in Rotterdam on May 18-22 and involve 41 nations.