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GENEVA (AP) — The organizer of the Eurovision Song Contest said Friday that it will start talks with the BBC on possibly holding next year’s event in the U.K. after concluding that it can’t be held in Ukraine.
The event is traditionally staged by the previous year’s winner. Last month, Ukrainian band Kalush Orchestra won the 2022 contest.
Ukraine’s public broadcaster, UA:PBC, has staged the event twice before, in 2005 and 2017. The European Broadcasting Union said it had carried out “a full assessment and feasibility study” on the possibility of it doing so again.
It said the contest is one of the world’s most complex television productions and needs 12 months of preparation time.
The contest’s governing board “has with deep regret concluded that, given the current circumstances, the security and operational guarantees required for a broadcaster to host, organize and produce the Eurovision Song Contest” under the event’s rules cannot be fulfilled by the Ukrainian broadcaster, the EBU said in a statement.
The BBC said in a statement that “clearly these aren’t a set of circumstances that anyone would want,” but that after the EBU decision “we will of course discuss the BBC hosting the Eurovision Song Contest.”