2020.03.12 17:56

Lithuania's Eurovision hopeful cancels trips to UK and Netherlands due to coronavirus 2020.03.12 17:56

The Roop, which is representing Lithuania in this year's Eurovision Song Contest, has cancelled a trip to the Netherlands and all planned performances in London and Amsterdam due to the coronavirus, the band said on Thursday.

“We do not want to risk our own or the public's health,” the band's lead singer Vaidotas Valiukevičius said in a statement.

On Thursday, the Lithuanian government announced a series of anti-epidemic measures, including cancelling all indoor events in the coming two weeks, and advised people to postpone foreign trips. A number of European countries have taken similar steps.

Read more: Lithuanian government orders school closures and travel restrictions to prevent coronavirus

“We will observe the government's recommendations to avoid foreign trips. We believe that caution is the best method for us to return to our normal lives,” according to Valiukevičius.

The Roop was planning to leave for Rotterdam on Friday to film the video postcard that will introduce Lithuania during Eurovision in May.

The band was also booked to perform in Eurovision concerts in London on March 29 and in Amsterdam on April 4.

“The world must be united now. It is a time not for fighting or competing, but for being united,” said Mantas Banišauskas, the band's guitarist.

The Roop won Lithuania's national Eurovision selection with On Fire in February. The song has been tipped to be one of the favourites at the Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam.

Eurovizija 2020. Finalas. The Roop – „On Fire“

“We are sorry to have to postpone our representatives' trip, but this is the only right decision right now,” said LRT senior producer Audrius Giržadas who heads the Lithuanian delegation at Eurovision. “We have to be responsible in our fight with the coronavirus pandemic and avoid risks and trips abroad as much as possible.”