Belarus: EBU enforces officially BTRC’s membership suspension
The EBU today implemented its decision on the BTRC and formally suspended the participation of Belarus’s national broadcaster.
The latest act of breach of BTRC rules and suspension of membership took place today with the EBU enforcing its final decision to suspend Belarus’s television cooperation outside the EBU.
It all started in March, when the BTRC was disqualified from the Eurovision Song Contest 2021 after a bid failed to meet EBU requirements for Eurovision songs. Following today ‘s developments, Belarus’ participation in next year’ s Eurovision Song Contest does not seem to be possible.
Following this development, the EBU issued the following statement in May:
“The EBU has been closely monitoring the suppression of media freedom in Belarus and have consistently called on BTRC, as a Member of the EBU, to uphold our core values of freedom of expression, independence and accountability.
Since the disputed elections last summer, we have been campaigning for the protection of independent journalism and freedom of expression in the country. We have publicly supported journalists at BTRC who have been protesting against government interference. We have also been monitoring BTRC’s coverage and have communicated our concerns to their management.
In recent weeks, we have been particularly alarmed by the broadcast of interviews apparently obtained under duress.
We have also monitored other BTRC broadcasts on this issue which have raised other serious and quite exceptional concerns.
In light of these exceptional developments, the Executive Board has no alternative other than to propose the suspension of BTRC’s membership of the EBU.
BTRC will have two weeks to respond, before suspension comes into effect.
Following the Executive Board’s ruling, the BTRC had two weeks to respond before the suspension took effect.
The EBU imposed the original decision with which the BTRC did not show any intention to comply, but the opposite was released last night in a rather offensive response to the EBU which you can read here.
The final suspension of the BTRC means that the country will no longer be able to participate in the EBU programming and will not be able to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest or Junior Eurovision, at least through the BTRC.
Belarus in Eurovision
Belarus has been taking part in the Eurovision Song contest since 2004 and has not won the competition to date.
Best placing so far was in 2007 with Dmitry Koldun and Work Your Magic which finished 6th in the final.
News Source: EBU/BTRC