Exclusive: Israeli songs banned at Eurovision events in Malmo

Israeli DJs confirm instruction to refrain from playing songs at Eurovision Village, the contests' official party venue although Malmo municipality producing events; EBU: 'not involved in any programming of events'; Malmo: 'We would never give such a directive'

Roy Elman|
Exclusive: Israeli songs have been banned from official Eurovision events during the May competition in Malmo, Ynet has learned. DJs were told not to play them at all.
The instruction was given ahead of the Eurovision Village event that is held annually in the city that is hosting the contest with the attendance of tens of thousands, both tourists and local residents, and includes live concerts, parties where songs from previous years are played and broadcasts of the semi-final and final competitions. In the past, Israeli songs were among the most often played to the party goers.
Israeli DJs who were booked for the events every year, confirmed to Ynet that such instructions were given and that they pertained to the Eurovision Village itself and not to other events taking place in Malmo.
"The instruction I received this morning was that in the village itself, Israeli songs must not be played, but in other parties, I can play what I want," one of the DJs said adding that a similar ban was put on Russian and Belarus songs but both countries were not participating in the song contest.
"I think the reason for the decision is a security concern. There are many Muslims and supporters of Palestinians in Malmo and many of them are expected to come to the Eurovision Village. I suppose the producers wanted to avoid a fuss or anything that would disrupt things in the village," he said.
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Eden Golan representing Israel in the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmo
(Photo: Ran Yehezkel)
The Eurovision Village is the official venue of the Eurovision Song Contest which is an EBU production but the producer on the ground is the Malmo municipality.
The EBU and the Malmo municipality have issued comments following the report:
EBU: "While the Eurovision Village is an official venue of the Eurovision Song Contest, the EBU is not involved in any programming of events or entertainment activities during the event."
Malmo municipality: "This is not true. We would never give such a directive. Eurovision in Malmö is for everyone and all music can be played."
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Israeli Eurovision song
(Courtesy: Kan112)
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