(June 17, 2018 / Israel Hayom) With the presidential and parliamentary elections in Turkey only a week away, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim has found a new way of discrediting Israel in hopes to score political points: the Eurovision song contest.
Israeli singer Netta Barzilai won the 2018 Eurovision song contest held in Lisbon, Portugal, in May with her catchy techno-dance tune “Toy.”
Turkey pulled out of the annual song contests in 2012 citing dissatisfaction with the rules of the competition.
“Israel only knows how to kill, not sing,” Yildirim said on Saturday.
He further claimed that the winning Israeli song was “not good,” telling local media that the “imperialists”—the judging countries—“changed the rules” to ensure that next year’s Eurovision would be held in Jerusalem, something he predicted would “spark a religious war.”
“They let Israel win even though it didn’t have enough points, so it could host the competition,” he said.
Yildirim also attacked Barzilai personally, saying: “She can’t sing.”
The prospect of holding the 2019 Eurovision song contest in Jerusalem has already sparked some controversy. Earlier in June, the European Broadcasting Union, an alliance of public-service broadcasters that organizes the contest, asked Israel to find an alternative venue rather than Jerusalem for the contest, citing the “politically charged” nature of the Israeli capital.