At a meeting at ETV headquarters earlier today, it was decided that Estonia will not boycott the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest as 66% of the public voted to see their country participate. Earlier this year, a member of the Estonian Parliament had campaigned for the country to miss the event in Moscow and for Latvia and Lithuania to join them in responce to Russian activity in Georgia.
The poll launched earlier this month by ERR showed that Estonians wish to see their flag flown in Moscow by a majority of 66%. Although Margus Allikmaa, ERR Chairman of the board, is still not convinced Estonia should participate in the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest, the board's decision was in accordance with the poll's outcome.
Mr Allikmaa would like to see a local, well-organised song contest for Estonians only and he still feels going to Moscow is not the right decision: "Eurovision was never free of politics", he says, "every country has used the contest for political reasons and so will Russia!. It is very naïve to believe that singing and politics can be kept apart. But as our poll showed that the majority of Estonians wish our country to participate, I have to respect that", he concluded.
Special thanks to Martin Paberit for his assistance with the article.