Demonstrators on the occasion of Malmo before the final match: “Boycott Israel”!

Demonstrators on the occasion of Malmo before the final match: “Boycott Israel”!

An hour before kick-off, there were still thousands demonstrating in the streets of Malmö. VG reporters immediately reported that there were several cars driving around the city of Malmö carrying Palestinian flags.

Video clips from the scene show the presence of large police forces and a turbulent atmosphere. It looks like there was some pushing in the area outside the arena.

More and more protesters are coming to the arena as the ESC final will start at 9pm on Saturday night. Some of them are removed by the police.

Some Palestinian demonstrators shout “Shame on you” at those queuing to enter the arena to hear the finalists.

Immediately afterwards, another group of protesters was pushed onto a side road by large police forces, as also happened in connection with Thursday's semi-final match.

Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT/TT Nyhytsperan/NTB

The VG team was able to report earlier on Saturday about several people on the streets of Malmö.

– They shout politely, “Boycott, boycott, boycott Israel!” – Tell the VG team in Malmö.

All seemed to be going smoothly after the first marking operation began at 3.30pm.

Just over an hour later, there were people as far as the eye could see in Sudargatan driving away from Stortorvet where the demo had started.

Ziad (56 years old) appeared at the demonstration carrying pictures of children affected by the war in Gaza on his body.

– They bombed homes and schools. Children are affected. They want people to move from Rafah. But there is nowhere to move to, the protester told VG during the commemoration in Malmö.

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human rights

He did not want to say anything about Israel's participation in the Eurovision final.

– I don't want to talk about politics, only about human rights, he said while raising the Palestinian flag high.

Police officers from the Oslo Police District have been called in to act as additional staff against social unrest and demonstrations in the Eurovision city of Malmö.

Tonight, Israel and Norway will compete in the Eurovision final in Malmö.

Already at around 15:00 the city was boiling when several thousand gathered for demonstrations in the city centre.

There were two demonstrations planned for Saturday. Both are against Israel's participation in Eurovision.

Tagging: Protesters wearing Palestinian scarves and carrying flags tag themselves in the streets of Malmö on Saturday afternoon. Photo: Matthijs Sandblad/VG

– During the previous demonstration there were many people. But it went smoothly, without any major disturbances. “We hope to achieve the same result today,” Swedish police spokeswoman Evelina Olsson said in Malmö.

– Preparations are going well. “We are making the same preparations as we had before Thursday’s demonstrations,” Pia Jacobsen of Stoppa Israel told VG before the demonstration.

Norwegian police are also present in Malmö. Operations Commander Lars Kostveit from the Oslo Police District is shown with his colleagues in a street scene wearing Norwegian police uniforms.

Demonstrating: A large crowd of people demonstrate in the host city for the Eurovision final on Saturday afternoon. Photo: Matthijs Sandblad/VG

– We are here to help the Swedish police against signs and any social unrest, Kostvedt told VG in Malmö.

Quiet on Thursday

He and his colleagues in the Norwegian police are in the city located in southern Sweden after an inquiry from the Swedes to the Norwegian Police Directorate. The commander of the Norwegian task force expressed his conviction that the demonstrations that took place on Thursday went smoothly.

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“I hope our presence has helped alleviate that,” Kostveit told the VG team in Malmö.

It will stop Israel's participation

Pia Jacobson said in Stoppa Israel that the message was the same on Saturday as it was during Thursday's demonstration.

– Israel will not be allowed to participate in Eurovision, and we want to show the Palestinian people that we support them, she said.

-Are you afraid that there will be disturbance?

– She can always do that. We cannot take responsibility for the actions of individuals. She added: “But we have good communications with the police, and we have experienced guards who are there and take care of them.”

Photo: Matthijs Sandblad/VG

Fanny Erickson, 20, said she pretends to stand up for what's right.

– I think it is wrong for Israel to participate in Eurovision. When Russia is not allowed to participate, Israel should not be allowed to participate either, she told VG.

– It's great that there are so many here who think it's important to stand up for what's right.

-Are you afraid of disturbances?

-It's possible. But we do this out of love.

An estimated 1,000 police officers

With the help of Norway and Denmark, it is estimated that more than 1,000 police officers will work to ensure the safety of demonstrators and the public.

– We cannot go into details about their number. It is part of security work. We take noise into account – that's what we always do. This is an issue that many feel strongly about. Something we are aware of. “But we have no indication that violence may occur,” Olsson told VG.

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At the same time that Israel is participating in the Eurovision contest, tens of thousands are fleeing the Gaza border city of Rafah, while tanks are moving.

-We will have a low level of tolerance. Olson said: We will not tolerate hate speech, but we will tolerate violations of the law.

– What would happen if Israel won Eurovision?

– We do not want to speculate on this matter, we are creating a space where organizers and participants can express themselves.

Jabori Obasanjo

Jabori Obasanjo

"Coffee trailblazer. Certified pop culture lover. Infuriatingly humble gamer."

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