Controversy Over Hungarian Eurovision Song As Israeli Ambassador Criticises Reference To Gaza
Ferenc Sullivan 2015.03.23.
Israeli Ambassador to Hungary Ilan Mor has defended his decision to file a complaint to the Hungarian Media Service Support and Asset Management Fund (MTVA) in connection of an inscription featured in the background of Hungarian Eurovision nominee Boglárka Csemer performing the song “Wars for Nothing”. Mr. Mor claimed that is it “inappropriate” to send out political messages from a popular song contest in his interview with the news website Mandiner.hu.
The criticised Hungarian sentence – “2014 – Gaza – Two-thirds of the victims were civilians, including over 500 children.” – appears on a wall behind Boglárka “Boggie” Csemer while she performs “Wars For Nothing”, Hungary’s “anti-war” entry to the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest.
In the interview, Mr. Mor claims that the exact number of children deceased in the conflict is unknown, the background inscription is biased against Israel and that he is obliged to protect his country despite the fact that no direct reference is made to Israel.
On 19 March, the news website 444.hu reported that the Israeli Ambassador to Budapest has requested MTVA, which is responsible for organising the competition’s Hungarian phase, to remove the mentioned part of the background which he claims is an “unpleasant” anti-Israeli political message. In response, MTVA told Mr. Mor that Eurovision’s rules prohibit political messages and the sentence referring to Gaza will be removed.