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Russian Federation will not take part in this year's Eurovision Song Contest, organisers say, after host country Ukraine barred its entrant from entering the country.

Ukraine is refusing to allow Julia Samoilova to perform at Eurovision because she toured Crimea in 2015, after the peninsula was seized by Russian Federation in 2014.

"No previous host country has prevented an artist performing at the Eurovision Song Contest and the EBU would like a precedent to be set in 2017", they said in a letter to Kyiv.

Channel One, Russia's TV network, rejected both options and announced they won't broadcast this year's the competition.

The heavy referencing of Crimea was seen by many Russians as a barb meant to bring global attention to the 2014 annexation and the following separatist insurgency in eastern Ukraine.

Organisers had threatened to ban Ukraine from future competitions unless it allowed Samoilova into the country to participate.

IMRI is no stranger to the Eurovision Song Contest having provided backing vocals for Nadav Guedj's Golden Boy in 2015 as well as Hovi Star's song a year ago, Made of Stars.

The European Broadcasting Union said that it was deeply disappointed in Kiev's decision to ban Russian contestant from entering Ukraine.

"We express regret that the Eurovision organisers could not fulfil the conditions of their own rules and were unable to call upon the country that expressed willingness to hold the contest to observe the rules on hosting", Peskov said.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) which produces the annual Song Contest said it offered two possible solutions, but both were rejected.

Had Julia - who suffers from spinal muscular atrophy - taken part, she would have been only the second performer to take to the Eurovision stage in a wheelchair, following Poland's Monika Kuczynska in 2015.

Kiev said that Samoylova has violated Ukraine's borders by entering Crimea without seeking permission from the Ukrainian authorities.

The Eurovision Song Contest's grand final is due to take place in Kiev on May 13.


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