EBU confirms: “Russia no longer able to take part in Eurovision 2017”

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has just confirmed that Russia will not be participating in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest in Kyiv.
Moments ago Channel One stated they won’t be broadcasting the show and the statement from the EBU confirms this means a non-participation from Russian side.
Their statement is as following, taken from the official Eurovision website:

“These proposals were to either take part via satellite or to change their chosen artist to one who could legally travel to Ukraine for the duration of the Contest. Sadly both proposals have been rejected by Channel One and they have now announced they do not intend to broadcast the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. Unfortunately this means Russia will no longer be able to take part in this year’s competition. We very much wanted all 43 countries to be able to participate and did all we could to achieve this,” the EBU states.

Frank Dieter Freiling, Chairman of the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group, the event’s steering committee, said: “We strongly condemn the Ukrainian authorities’ decision to impose a travel ban on Julia Samoylova as we believe it thoroughly undermines the integrity and non-political nature of the Eurovision Song Contest and its mission to bring all nations together in friendly competition. However, preparations continue apace for the Eurovision Song Contest in the host city Kyiv. Our top priority remains to produce a spectacular Eurovision Song Contest with our Member UA:PBC in May.”
This means the semi-finals will now have an equal number of participants (18) and all the participants that would be performing after Russia, who were drawn at #3, will now be moved forward a spot.
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