Why Eurovision has banned the Palestinian flag. Like it has done with ISIS

This year’s edition of the Eurovision Song Constest has prevented the Palestinian national flag from being flown during the event, just like it has done with the Islamic State’s.

The Palestinian national flag has been banned from the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. In the list of banned flags, there’s also the terrorist organisation ISIS. 46 European countries will take part in the 2016 edition, which final will be held on the 14th of May in Stockholm, Sweden. So, during the event, the flag of the Middle East country, recognised by international organisations including UNESCO and 138 countries, will not be flown.

The official response of the PLO

This is outrageous according to Palestinian authorities, which protested by sending a letter to contest organizers. Moreover, the paradox is that the Scandinavian country is one of those nations that unilaterally recognised the State of Palestine in late 2014.


Eurovision 2016
Eurovision Song Contest 2016 is held in Stockholm, Sweden ©Michael Campanella/Getty Images


Palestine and the Islamic State are not the only ones in the list. The flags of Corsica and the Basque Country are not allowed either. Saeb Erekat, Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organisation, said it is a clear discrimination and demanded to reverse the decision.

Boycotting Eurovision

“We call upon Eurovision organisers to revoke their decision immediately and to apologise to the 11 million Palestinians of this grave, unacceptable, despicable mistake,” Erekat said.


Obama bandiera palestina
US President Barack Obama with Palestinian and US flags during his visit in West Bank in 2013 © Atef Safadi-Pool/Getty images)


The request, though, has been rejected. Eurovision reaffirmed the ban of the tricoloured flag – black, white, and green, with the red triangle. The contest’s Facebook official page has immediately been filled with criticisms. Some just ask for explanations, others say it’s a political choice. There’s also who decided to launch the #BoycottEurovision hashtag, to boycott the show.


Cover photo ©Ilia Yefimovich/Getty images

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