Eurovision officials are thinking about forbidding Ukraine to participate in further contests if the Russian competitor Julia Samoylova is not allowed to participate now. Ingrid Deltenre, head of the European Broadcasting Union, said that the board had sent a letter to the prime minister of Ukraine, Volodymyr Groysman, requesting to withdraw banning Ms Samoylova. The union warned that Ukraine’s current ban was “unacceptable” and the country “might be excluded from future events”, unless the ban is lifted. Deltenre said that unless Samoilova is permitted to play then it “would certainly have a very big negative impact on Ukraine’s international reputation as a modern, democratic European nation. We are increasingly frustrated, in fact angry, that this year’s competition is being used as a tool in the ongoing confrontation between the Russian Federation and Ukraine,” she added. The European Broadcasting Union blamed “staffing matters” for the crisis, but the departing staff warned in an open letter that the contest was facing serious hurdles and that staff had been “completely blocked” from making any progress.