Entertainment|Top Story

Eurovision Drama: Israel’s Eden Golan Triumphs Amidst Protests

Israeli singer Eden Golan has advanced to the final round of the Eurovision Song Contest following a successful public vote.

Her triumph came amidst a backdrop of protests in Malmö, Sweden, where the contest is being hosted, as thousands of pro-Palestinian demonstrators took to the streets to express solidarity with Gaza.

During dress rehearsals the night prior, the 20-year-old singer faced both applause and boos from the audience. Similar reactions were observed during Thursday’s semi-final performance.

Reflecting on her achievement, Golan expressed her gratitude and emotions, stating, “It is truly such an honor to be here on stage, representing [Israel] with pride. I’m so grateful for everyone who voted and took part in supporting us, and me.”

Which acts advanced from the second semi-final?

The following 10 performers secured their spots in Thursday’s public vote:

1. Latvia
2. Austria
3. The Netherlands
4. Norway
5. Israel
6. Greece
7. Estonia
8. Switzerland
9. Georgia
10. Armenia

Consequently, the six countries that were eliminated from the competition are Malta, Albania, Belgium, Czechia, Denmark, and San Marino.

Reuters Pro-Palestinian demonstrators in Malmö on Thursday
Pro-Palestinian demonstrators in Malmö on Thursday

Amidst ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, Israel’s participation in Eurovision has sparked controversy. The escalation in civilian casualties and deteriorating humanitarian conditions in Gaza, as the conflict extends into its seventh month, have intensified scrutiny.

In Malmö’s central square on Thursday afternoon, smoke canisters in the colors of the Palestinian flag were ignited, accompanied by chants of “Free Palestine.” A smaller demonstration in support of Israel also occurred.

While the protests were predominantly peaceful, heightened security measures were observed, with armed police stationed outside the hotel where Golan is lodged. Additionally, Golan has been confined to her room when not performing on stage.

Despite facing a hostile reception during dress rehearsals, the singer expressed unwavering determination to participate in the contest.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu extended his support to Golan ahead of the semi-final through a message on social media. In Hebrew, he conveyed, “Eden, I want to wish you success. You know what? You’ve already succeeded – because you are not only competing in Eurovision in a proud and very impressive way, you are successfully facing an ugly wave of antisemitism – and you are standing up to it and representing the State of Israel with great honor. So what a blessing, and know that when people yell ‘boo’ at you, we shout ‘hooray’.”

Kindly share this story:
Kindly share this story:
Share on whatsapp
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on telegram
Share on facebook
Top News

Related Articles