The extreme measures reportedly being taken in Azerbaijan to prepare to host the Eurovision Song Contest this year has prompted an official from the Icelandic Human Rights Centre to propose considering boycotting the event altogether.
Having won Eurovision last year, Azerbaijan is this year’s host, but the matter is not without controversy. BBC has reported mass evictions in the capital of Baku to make way for the Eurovision venue, and the Azerbaijani government’s poor human rights record has also been criticised.
RÚV reports that Margrét Steinarsdóttir, the director of the Icelandic Human Rights Office, believes Iceland should consider boycotting the event altogether this year.
Margrét points out that the publicly known human rights abuses in Azerbaijan ought to give the Icelandic government cause for concern and to “seriously consider” a boycott. She adds that other nations could be encouraged to take part as well, as international pressure tends to work best when it comes to improving the human rights practices of another government.