Advertisement

We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Joost Klein of the Netherlands AP Photo/Martin Meissner/PA Images
Europapa

Dutch act Joost Klein kicked out of Eurovision after police investigation, EBU confirms

The performer was “suspected of unlawful threats” against “an employee at Eurovision”, according to a police statement.

LAST UPDATE | 11 May

THE DUTCH ACT Joost Klein will not be competing in the Grand Final of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest following a police investigation, organisers have confirmed.

“Swedish police have investigated a complaint made by a female member of the production crew after an incident following his performance in Thursday night’s semi-final,” a statement from the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) notes.

“While the legal process takes its course, it would not be appropriate for him to continue in the contest.

“We would like to make it clear that, contrary to some media reports and social media speculation, this incident did not involve any other performer or delegation member,” the statement adds.

There had been speculation that the incident in question related to the Israeli contestant Eden Golan or her delegation, following a tense exchange at a press conference on Thursday, but the EBU said this is not the case.

Swedish and Dutch news outlets have reported that Klein is being investigated after an incident involving a television production worker.

A spokeswoman for the Swedish Police Authority said in a statement to the PA news agency that Klein was “suspected of unlawful threats” against “an employee at Eurovision”.

“The police have taken all essential investigative measures and questioned the suspect, plaintiff and witnesses. The investigation has been completed by the police.

“The case follows the normal legal process. The police have used faster prosecution and the case will now go to the prosecutor within a few weeks.”

The official page of the Netherlands’ Songfestival, which sends acts to Eurovision, said it is “shocked” and finds the decision “disproportionate”.

After his disqualification, Albania’s entry, Besa Kokedhima, wrote on X, formerly Twitter: “Please bring Joost back!”

One of the favourites

Klein was representing the Netherlands with his song Europapa and was one of the successful acts at Thursday night’s semi-final to be voted through to the final.

His song is dedicated to his parents, who died when he was a child. He previously said he had promised them that he would compete in the Eurovision one day.

The 26-year-old rapper and singer had been one of the favourites to win the contest. However, he was not permitted to perform at the dress rehearsals yesterday following the incident the night before.

There was booing in the arena yesterday when it was announced he would not be performing. Hundreds of Dutch fans are in Malmö for the Eurovision.

The final of the 68th song contest will now proceed tonight with 25 participating acts, including Ireland’s Bambie Thug, instead of 26.

In a follow-up statement, the EBU said viewers from the Netherlands will still be allowed to vote in the grand final and added that the Dutch jury result is still valid.

All contestants will keep their number in the official running order and there will be no song in position number five, the statement added.

With reporting by Daragh Brophy and Press Association