Bankova refutes claims that Zelenskyy asked and was denied a speaking spot at Eurovision

12 May, 01:09 PM
Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Photo:Office of the President of Ukraine)

Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Photo:Office of the President of Ukraine)

Ukraine did not ask the organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest to allow President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to deliver a speech, Zelenskyy spokesperson Sergii Nykyforov said on Facebook on May 12.

"The Office of the President of Ukraine did not contact the organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest with a proposal for an online speech by Volodymyr Zelenskyy during the final or at any other stage of the contest," Nykyforov wrote.

The refutation rebuts a May 11 claim made by UK newspaper The Times that Zelenskyy had been turned down for a speaking spot at the contest, due to its organizers citing "strict rules" and the "non-political nature" of the contest, though The Times said that "difficult and delicate negotiations are still ongoing” over the matter.

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Zelenskyy has given speeches in which he mentions the full-scale Russian war waged against Ukraine not only to parliaments around the world, but also at high-profile cultural events, such as the Grammy Awards, Glastonbury Festival, and the Cannes Film Festival.

Last year, Ukrainian band Kalush Orchestra won the Eurovision Song Contest. This year’s edition was supposed to take place in Ukraine, but due to the war, the organizers moved it to Liverpool, UK.

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