Eurovision Axes ‘Anti-Putin’ Song

Georgia’s entry in the Eurovision Song Contest has been booted because the organisers feel the lyrics to “We Don’t Wanna Put In” poke fun at Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

“We don’t wanna put in, the negative move, it’s killin’ the groove,” sings male vocalist Stephane and female trio 3G, apparently contravening the competition rules that bar songs containing political content.

“No lyrics, speeches, gestures of a political or similar nature shall be permitted,” said a Eurovision spokesman.

The Geneva-based European Broadcasting Union, which runs the contest, said Georgia can rewrite the lyrics of its song or select another entry.

The song, which was chosen by a public vote and jury, may be a reaction from the people of Georgia – once a relatively affluent part of the USSR – regarding Russia’s approach to the region.

It’s less than a year since Russia and Georgia went to war over South Ossetia, a disputed region in the South Caucasus, although relations between the two countries have been tense since the fall of communism in 1991.

Georgia initially announced it would not take part in this year’s Eurovision, which is being staged in Moscow because Russia won last year’s contest, but that decision was reversed in December.

Natya Uznadze, the Georgian group’s producer, said they had yet to receive official confirmation of the decision.

Vladimir Smirnov from Russia’s state-run Channel One, which will broadcast the contest, said the network had nothing to do with the decision.