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Israel shares edited Eurovision entry after lyric controversy

The country had threatened to withdraw from the contest due to criticism over the lyrics to its entry song.

By Will Richards

Eden Golan (Picture: Shai Franco)

Israel has shared an edited version of its entry song for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest after controversy over its lyrics.

The country selected 20-year-old Eden Golan as their entry for this year’s contest, which is set to be held in Malmö, Sweden.

Golan’s song is titled ‘October Rain’, and reportedly contained a number of references to Hamas’ October 7 attacks on the country, which sparked the current ongoing conflict with Palestine.

After Israel threatened to withdraw from the contest if the lyrics were censored, they have now shared an alternate version of the song, titled ‘Hurricane’.

The original lyrics in question – “and I promise you that never again / I’m still wet from this October rain” – have now been changed to: “Baby, promise me you’ll hold me again / I’m still broken from this hurricane”.

Another controversial lyric, “They were all good children, each one of them,” has also been changed.

Listen to ‘Hurricane’ below.

The contest faced intense backlash and criticism after allowing Israel to compete. An open letter to the EBU was signed by over 1000 Swedish artists including the likes of Robyn and First Aid Kit – which called for Israel’s withdrawal from the contest in May.

“The fact that countries that place themselves above humanitarian law are welcomed to participate in international cultural events trivialises violations of international law and makes the suffering of the victims invisible,” the letter reads.

It adds: “Allowing Israel’s participation undermines not only the spirit of the competition but the entire public service mission. It also sends the signal that governments can commit war crimes without consequences.”

On the flip side, the likes of Sharon Osbourne, Boy George and Gene Simmons have all backed Israel’s participation.