The Netherlands’ Eurovision Entry Disqualified, Joost Klein Sent Home After Intimidation Allegation

The Netherlands will not be represented in this evening’s Eurovision Song Contest Grand Final after their artist Joost Klein was disqualified.

The European Broadcasting Union released a statement Saturday morning saying the Dutch artist, previously one of the breakout stars of this year’s Contest with his song ‘Europapa’, would not be allowed to compete in this evening’s Final in Malmo, Sweden.

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The statement from the EBU said: “It would not be appropriate for him to continue in the contest” while the legal process takes place.”

The BBC reports that Klein has been sent home after an allegation of intimidation was made to Swedish police by a female member of the production crew. They quote the reaction of Dutch broadcaster Avrtotros, saying the decision was “disproportionate” and that they are “shocked by the decision.”

Klein is being investigated by Swedish police after an altercation between him and a photographer, as reported by Eurovoix News. He was prevented from performing in Friday evening’s Jury Final (where the national juries watch the performances to vote), and a video of his semi-final performance the previous evening played instead.

This is an extra challenge for a Contest already mired in controversy over Israel’s participation. While the Israeli entry Eden Golan got through the semi-final on Thursday and is now the second favourite to win the competition, protests outside the venue attracted a reported 12,000 people, demonstrating against Israel’s inclusion in the multi-national event.

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