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  • Singer Madonna speaks to guests after receiving the Advocate for Change award during the 30th annual GLAAD awards ceremony in New York City, New York

    Singer Madonna speaks to guests after receiving the Advocate for Change award during the 30th annual GLAAD awards ceremony in New York City, New York | Photo: Reuters

Published 14 May 2019

"I'll never stop playing music to suit someone's political agenda nor will I stop speaking out against violations of human rights wherever in the world they may be," the singer said in a statement to Reuters.

The Pop superstar Madonna told Reuters on Tuesday that she plans to perform at the Eurovision Song Contest in Israel, despite pressure from pro-Palestinian activist groups like the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS). 

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In her first comment on her decision to sing at the event, Madonna said she was a supporter of all human rights.

"I'll never stop playing music to suit someone's political agenda nor will I stop speaking out against violations of human rights wherever in the world they may be," the singer said in a statement to Reuters.

"My heart breaks every time I hear about the innocent lives that are lost in this region and the violence that is so often perpetuated to suit the political goals of people who benefit from this ancient conflict. I hope and pray that we will soon break free from this terrible cycle of destruction and create a new path towards peace," she added.

Israel is hosting the Eurovision contest after local singer Netta Barzilai won last year. The winning country customarily hosts the following year.

Madonna will make a guest appearance on Saturday during the Eurovision finals in Tel Aviv. The venue has prompted calls for a boycott by pro-Palestinian activists who want companies, performers and governments to disengage from Israel.

The popular Eurovision competition features musicians from more than 40 nations and was watched last year by some 189 million viewers in around 50 European countries.

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