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Singing in Azerbaijan – but not for democracy

The country is in a fervour as it prepares to host Eurovision – but activists say the party is just a smokescreen for human rights abuses

Saturday 12 May 2012

Azerbaijan's Ell and Nikki, who won Eurovision last year

It does not take long to notice that Azerbaijan is hosting the Eurovision Song Contest.

Baku Airport is emblazoned with advertisements for the competition, which will take place a fortnight from now, as is almost every taxi and bus in the city, along with many of its buildings. The gleaming, 25,000-seat concert hall, built especially for the contest, has been completed on time and was opened by the President himself last week, and hardly a day goes by without breathless items on the evening news extolling the upcoming event.

Not for Azerbaijan the flippant attitude that Eurovision is a carnival of kitsch that should be taken as a bit of a joke

Added: May-12-2012 
By: gemini
Regional News
Tags: politics
Location: Azerbaijan (load item map)
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