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Eurovision. Numerous arrests in Malmo in protests against Israel's participation

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Before the event began, dozens gathered near the building where the festival's final will be held on Saturday.

The police are trying to remove them and have set up a security barrier, but there is resistance from the demonstrators and security forces have already arrested several people.

During the afternoon of Saturday, A crowd of demonstrators gathered in the central square of the Swedish city before marching towards the competition siteWaving Palestinian flags.

Many try to storm the square where the European festival is being held at 8pm, chanting “Shame on you” as police push them away.

RTP's special envoys to Malmö, Katarina Cadavis and Bruno Jesus, are on site to monitor the situation.

“Eurovision united by genocide,” some demonstrators shouted, referring to the contest’s slogan, “Eurovision united by music.”

Eurovision organizers resisted calls to exclude Israel, but called for the song's lyrics to be changed to remove what organizers described as references to the deadly October 7 Hamas attack that sparked the war.

The authorities appreciate this Between six thousand and eight thousand people joined the demonstration. The protest was not expected to have this dimension.

“It is important to show that we are on the right side. It could be any other country and we would still be here, because it is about children, men and women whose lands have been occupied for many years,” one participant told Reuters.

Hundreds of people decided to sit on the ground to avoid being pushed by the police and intend to remain there until the end of the Eurofestival. Among the crowds, there are not only Swedes, but also many citizens of other countries.

But the Norwegian newspaper VG reported this On Friday, four countries – including Portugal – considered withdrawing from Eurovision. Delegations from Ireland, the United Kingdom, Switzerland and Portugal will meet with the European Broadcasting Union, the festival organizer.

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According to VG, the meetings continued until late. The four countries that considered withdrawing from the competition were the same ones that were absent during the flag parade and rehearsal on Friday evening.

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