Jamala’s Song, Contrary to the Rules Of Eurovision, Was Not New

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Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ

19th May, 2016


Ukrainian video blogger Anatoly Shariy discovered that Jamala’s song with which she won the Eurovision song contest had been performed in public on 18th May last year, and thus should not have been used to participate in the European competition.

As was reported by Shariy on his YouTube channel, the idea that the song could be “late” was uttered by President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, who reported that Jamala’s composition “1944” was previously called “our Crimea” in the Tatar language.

Consequently, a video from the singer’s concert from 18th May 2015 appeared on Youtube, where she actually sang the same song under the old name.

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According to the rules of “Eurovision”, any song may not participate in the competition that has been performed before 1st September the previous year.

However, Shariy expressed the opinion that this fact will not lead to a revision of the results of the competition.

On Saturday, the final of the Eurovision song contest took place in Stockholm, and the audience gave the most votes to the representative of Russia Sergey Lazarev, however, when these votes were added to the judges scores, he took third place, and the jury gave the win to the representative of Ukraine – Jamal – who performed a song about the deportation of Crimean Tatars by Stalin in 1944.

Users of social networks from different countries also protested the new voting system at the Eurovision song contest and called it a political view. In their opinion, the winner of the contest should have been Sergey Lazarev.

In Ukraine, Jamala’s victory was perceived as being politicized. Leader of the party “Fatherland” Yulia Tymoshenko and ex-Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk called for the 2017 finals to be staged in Crimea, implying that it will be the territory of Ukraine. Later, Poroshenko awarded Jamal the title of people’s artist of Ukraine and said that the song encourages listeners to “become part of the liberation process of Crimea”.

Jamal stated that she considered it to be inappropriate to talk about politics in her song “1944” performed at the competition.

Meanwhile, the politicization of Eurovision after the victory of Ukraine was recognized in European and overseas media.

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