Eurovision axes Dutch entry Joost Klein after controversy over ‘incident’ | World News

Eurovision has kicked out the Netherlands’ entrant following a controversy over an ‘incident’ he was involved in.

Joost Klein was alleged to have made verbal threats to a female production worker at the event’s venue in Malmo, Sweden, on Thursday night.

Eurovision organisers said: “We would like to make it clear that, contrary to some media reports and social media speculation, this incident did not involve any other performer or delegation member.

Pic: Reuters
Eden Golan representing Israel performs on stage during the second semi-final of the 2024 Eurovision Song Contest, in Malmo, Sweden, May 9, 2024. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger
Israel’s entrant, Eden Golan, in the semi-finals. Pic: Reuters

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) said: “We maintain a zero-tolerance policy towards inappropriate behaviour at our event and are committed to providing a safe and secure working environment for all staff at the contest.

“In light of this, Joost Klein’s behaviour towards a team member is deemed in breach of contest rules.”

The final will go ahead with 25 entrants tonight, with Croatia and Switzerland among those tipped to take the trophy.

The UK’s entry is Olly Alexander, with his track Dizzy, while Bambie Thug, represents Ireland.

Klein had been due to perform his track Europapa, a happy-hardcore inspired song dismissed by one critic as “so bad” it will “put you off music forever”, but which was nonetheless one of the favourites to win.

Protests have dogged the competition over Israel’s inclusion amid the war in Gaza.

On Thursday, 10,000-12,000 people, including Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, took to the streets of the city to call for Israel to be excluded.

Protesters take part in the Stop Israel demonstration in Malmo, Sweden, Thursday, May 9, 2024. Several protests are expected against Israel's participation in the 68th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) at the Malmo Arena. (Johan Nilsson/TT News Agency via AP)
A Stop Israel demonstration in Malmo. Pic: AP

Ms Thunberg, 21, claimed Israel is trying to “artwash” Eurovision, referencing the use of artistic performance to distract from perceived negative actions by people, groups, governments or countries.

“The world cannot remain silent in a genocide,” she said on X.

Read more from Sky News:
Bambie Thug calls for Eurovision ‘humanity’
Police officer shot with crossbow
Djokovic hit in head by water bottle

At a news conference the same day, Klein covered his head while Golan was speaking to reporters and shouted “why not” when a journalist told her she didn’t have to answer a question.

Source link