Munich Pride distances itself from Mélovin's song
We invited Mélovin to Munich as a queer singer and activist who courageously stands up for the LGBTIQ* community in his country. The list of his songs had been agreed upon in advance; the song "Bandera is our father, Ukraine is our mother" was not on it. We would not have allowed it otherwise.
In fact, we as CSD Munich only found out last Thursday, 29 June, that Mélovin had sung this song and what its content was. We had received a few emails from individuals and the media. We immediately contacted Mélovin and the city of Munich to clarify the situation and to answer the individual enquiries with an official statement from CSD Munich on Friday. For reasons of transparency and because distancing ourselves from Stepan Bandera is important to us, we decided on Sunday, 2 July, to also make the statement public here.
Even if we did not know about the new interpretation of the song, which has gone viral in Ukraine in the meantime, there is no doubt that Stepan Bandera, as a historical person, central leadership figure of a radical nationalist organisation and because of his responsibility for mass murders - especially of Jews and Poles - stands in maximum opposition to the values that CSD Munich stands for.
Despite our unwavering solidarity with the Ukrainian resistance against the inhumane Russian war of aggression, the fact that the focus in Ukraine is currently on Bandera's role as a fighter for the independence of his country due to the existentially threatening situation cannot change this.
CSD Munich stands for cosmopolitanism, equal rights and acceptance towards all people. For years we have stood in solidarity behind the queer community in our partner city Kyiv and Ukraine; since 2022 we have commemorated their (queer) war victims. We therefore distance ourselves from the choice of song.