Eurovision organizers scold Swedish artist for wearing Palestinian Keffiyeh

Lifestyle

Published: 2024-05-09 17:56

Last Updated: 2024-06-18 23:33


Swedish pop star Eric Saade, pictured wearing a Keffiyeh on his wrist during his Eurovision performance.
Swedish pop star Eric Saade, pictured wearing a Keffiyeh on his wrist during his Eurovision performance.

Swedish singer Eric Saade, who is of Palestinian origin, wore a Palestinian Keffiyeh around his wrist in the opening performance of the Eurovision song contest – which prompted the organizers, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), to issue a statement condemning the artist and labeling his actions as “sad”.

“The Eurovision Song Contest is a live TV show. All performers are made aware of the rules of the contest, and we regret that Eric Saade chose to compromise the non-political nature of the event,” the EBU said in a statement.

Ebba Adielsson, the Executive Producer for Eurovision 2024, said that “we think it is sad that he uses his participation in this way, Eric Saade is well aware of the rules that apply when standing on the Eurovision Song Contest stage. We think it’s sad that he’s used his participation in this way.”

In response, Saade expressed his anger on social media with the statements, calling the EBU “disgraceful” and saying it is used to disseminate “Israeli” propaganda.

“This was just my way of showing a part of my origin, which is important in a world like this. I got that keffiyeh from my dad when I was a little boy, to never forget where the family comes from,” Saade said.

“I just wanted to be inclusive and wear something that is authentic to me – but the EBU seems to think my ethnicity is controversial. It says nothing about me, but everything about them…I can only hope for some kind of change in the future.”