The day Eurovision REALLY went political: Ukraine defeats Russia with a controversial ballad about Crimean annexation – pipping late favourites Australia to the post in the show’s most gripping climax yet


Ukraine defeated Russia in Saturday’s Eurovision Song Contest with a controversial ballad about Crimean annexation after pipping late favourites Australia to the post.

In perhaps the most political Eurovision yet, singer Jamala knocked Russia’s Sergey Lazarev into third with her song 1944 – which she dedicated to her great-grandmother and is reportedly about Stalin, Crimea and claims of ethnic cleansing.

After accepting the Eurovision trophy, the 32-year-old declared: ‘I know that you sing a song about peace and love, but actually, I really want peace and love to everyone.’  

The 32-year-old opera singer turned jazz star Jamala representing Ukraine sang the winning song 1944 – which is dedicated to her great-grandmother and is reportedly about Stalin, Crimea and claims of ethnic cleansing

Thrusting the glass microphone in the air Jamala yelled: ‘Thank you Europe – welcome to Ukraine.’ 

Jamala said that she wanted to make her song ‘about my great-grandmother Nazalkhan and thousands of Crimean Tatars who never had a chance to return to Crimea again.’ 

She belted out a lament entitled 1944 featuring the harrowing words: ‘When strangers are coming, they come to your house, they kill you all and say, ‘we’re not guilty, not guilty’.’

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