Ukraine Broadcaster ‘Disappointed’ After Eurovision Boss Ruins It Can’t Host

Ukraine’s public broadcaster said it was “disappointed” that Eurovision bosses have decided it cannot host next year’s competition and called on talks on a new venue to be halted.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) is in talks with the BBC over whether Britain can host the annual event, after Sam Ryder finished runner-up in Turin earlier this year.

If the UK hosts the competition in 2023, it will be here for the ninth time – more than any other country.

UA: PBC issued a statement on Friday in which it claimed the EBU “denied Ukraine the right to host Eurovision 2023” after analyzing the security situation in the war-torn country.

UA: Mykola Chernotsky, head of the PBC’s managing board, said: “We are disappointed by the EBU’s decision.

“During this month, a large number of people in Ukraine have thrown all their efforts to fulfill the conditions for holding Eurovision in our country. Of course safety is our first priority.

“The team at UA: PBC, state and local officials did a thorough job and offered a variety of options.

“It is sad to see such an unproven statement, therefore, we ask our partners to hold further talks.”


Kalyush Orchestra of Ukraine (Eurovision/PA)

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The broadcaster’s statement detailed a meeting on 14 June in which the organizers of Ukraine met with representatives of the EBU and the competition.

They discussed security issues and three possible hosting locations – in Zakarpattia on the border with Lviv, Hungary and Slovakia, and in Kyiv.

The statement continued: “As a reminder, following the victory of the Kalush Orchestra at Eurovision 2022 in Turin, Ukraine obtained the right to host the Song Contest next year.

“UA: As a member of the European Broadcasting Union, PBC ensures the selection and participation of a representative of Ukraine in the Eurovision Song Contest, is an official broadcaster of the contest, and organizes the contest the following year in case of Ukraine’s victory. “

Downing Street has welcomed the possibility of the UK hosting Eurovision if Ukraine cannot.

A No. 10 spokesperson said: “Ukraine’s victory at the Eurovision Song Contest was largely deserved and as the rightful winner it was the government’s strong desire that next year’s contest be held there.

“If the EBU decides that the competition cannot proceed in Ukraine, we would certainly welcome the opportunity to work closely with Ukraine and the BBC to host it in the UK.

“But we will remain committed to ensuring that it reflects the rich culture, heritage and creativity of Ukraine, as well as the ongoing partnership between our two countries.”

Asked whether the government would help the BBC with spending, the spokesman said: “We are a little ahead of ourselves in terms of the process.”

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon offered Glasgow as a possible destination for the competition, tweeting: “I can think of a perfect location on the banks of the River Clyde!!”

OVO Hydro Arena in Glasgow said it would be “a pleasure” to join the discussion.

In a statement, it said: “We are naturally disappointed that, as announced, Ukraine will not be able to host Eurovision 2023.

“If Glasgow is being considered as a potential host city for the event, we would be happy to participate in that conversation.”

The BBC said in a brief statement: “We have seen the announcement from the EBU. Clearly these are not a set of circumstances that one would want.

“After their decision, we will certainly discuss the BBC hosting the Eurovision Song Contest.”


OVO Hydro (Andrew Milligan/PA)

It comes after UK’s Ryder topped the jury vote in Turin in May, but won overall after a symbolic display of public support by the Kalush Orchestra, which lifted them to first place with 631 points .

They were at the fore since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February – which prompted organizers to ban the Russian entrant from competing.

Ukraine joined the international competition in 2003 and its three victories made it one of the newest competing nations, having also won in 2004 and 2016.