Portuguese Eurovision entry Iolanda’s finale performance video replaced due to “pro-Palestine motifs” on her nails

Portuguese Eurovision entry Iolanda’s video was reportedly replaced with previous footage due to “pro-Palestine motifs” on her nails.

Last night’s contest saw Swiss entry Nemo crowned as its first nonbinary winner in a year marked with controversy due to the EBU’s struggle to enforce its political neutrality clause. This was especially notable in the inclusion of Israel this year, due to their role in the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict. Due to this political neutrality clause, the EBU announced they reserved the right to remove Palestinian flags and symbols.

However, performers such as Irish contestant Bambie Thug and Iolanda called for “peace” and “love” at the end of their songs, with the duo also sporting nail styles with Palestinian flag colours and symbols on them. In Iolanda’s case, the singer was wearing keffiyeh patterns (a Palestinian scarf) on her nails.

This has appeared to upset the EBU, who delayed the uploading of her final Eurovision performance due to her nails. When they did an hour later, it showed Iolanda’s semi-final performance instead, where she wore plain white nails.


According to Portuguese national broadcaster RTP, the EBU told them the reason for the delay was because “your competitor has pro-Palestine motifs painted on her nails”. RTP apparently responded with: “What does that have to do with anything?”

The broadcaster will allegedly consider a “formal protest” to the Eurovision organisers if they conclude Iolanda was “discriminated” against.


Iolanda is not the only contestant to have been censored due to the political neutrality clause. A now-deleted TikTok showed the moment Bambie Thug was forced to remove a pro-Palestine message from their costume, with the contestant responding: “It’s fucked up”.

Bambie was planning to wear the words ‘ceasefire’ and ‘freedom for Palestine’ on their costume in the form of Ogham, an ancient medieval script. However, they were forced to remove these messages hours before their rehearsals.

They later elaborated on their feelings about the last-minute costume change in a lengthy Instagram post, writing: “After my first dress rehearsal I was asked to remove both free Palestine and ceasefire in Ogham from my outfit. My delegation and I fought against this and the EBU eventually agreed to letting ceasefire remain. About an hour before my call time I was informed that they had an internal meeting and ceasefire was no longer acceptable, and if I didn’t remove this I would not be allowed on stage.


“I am pro-justice and pro-peace and this will never change, I only hope with a platform I can reach more peoples ears. My heart and prayers are with the people of Palestine #eyesonrafah and to be clear being pro-Palestinian does not mean I am antisemitic, it means I am anti-war, anti-occupation, anti-oppression and anti-killing of innocent civilians and children!!”

In other news, Bambie Thug has accused Eurovision organisers of “not supporting them” amidst Israel commentator controversy.