Jamala, Eurovision Winner, Faces Russian Wanted List for Alleged Anti-Military Information Violation

Controversy Unfolds as Russia Pursues Ukrainian Singer Over Eurovision Performance

In a recent development, Russia has added Susana Jamaladinova, the Ukrainian singer who triumphed in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest as Jamala, to its wanted list.

According to The Associated Press, an Interior Ministry database has Jamaladinova listed as sought for violating a criminal law, specifically for allegedly spreading false information about the Russian military and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. This charge comes after a law prohibiting such actions was enacted last year.

Jamaladinova, of Crimean Tatar heritage, clinched the Eurovision title with her song “1944“, inspired by the year of the Soviet Union’s deportation of Crimean Tatars—an annexation widely deemed illegitimate by many nations that still recognize Crimea as part of Ukraine. This victory occurred nearly two years after Russia annexed Crimea. Russia contested the song’s inclusion in the competition, arguing that it breached Eurovision’s rules against political speech. However, “1944” does not explicitly criticize Russia or the Soviet Union in its lyrics, though it alludes to such sentiments in its opening lines.

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In a notable turn of events, Russia faced exclusion from the Eurovision Song Contest in 2022. The European Broadcasting Union justified this decision by expressing concern that, given the unprecedented crisis in Ukraine, having a Russian entry in the contest would bring the competition into disrepute.

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