Ukraine crowned Eurovision winner following tension-filled climax with close rivals Russia and Australia
Published 14/05/2016 | 23:52
Ukraine was crowned winner of the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest.
Jamala won for her political song 1944 and pleaded for "peace and love" as she collected her trophy.
Her '1944' entry into the contest was inspired by her grandmother's personal experience during Stalin's forced deportation of Crimean Tatars.
After accepting the Eurovision trophy, she said: "I know that you sing a song about peace and love, but actually, I really want peace and love to everyone."
Looking at the lyrics of the song "1944". They are even more powerful, Sad and heart grabbing than first thought #Eurovision— Luke Wheeler (@ActualLWheeler) May 14, 2016
"#Eurovision is a place to put aside all political issues!"— EUROVISION ella (@_tachibanaaaaa) May 14, 2016
*winning song is about the Ukrainian Horrors of 1944 & the annexation of Crimea*
Thrusting the glass microphone in the air she yelled: "Thank you Europe - welcome to Ukraine."
Australia came second with Dami Im performing 'Sound Of Silence' while Russia came third with Sergey Lazarev singing 'You Are The Only One'.
Russia initially complained about Ukraine's choice of song but Jamala was eventually cleared to compete - ending up fighting for the top prize with Russia's Sergey Lazarev.
The final outcome was surprising, however, as Australia had a comfortable position at the top of the scoreboard throughout the jury votes from each country.
Apparently the new voting system is 'just a bunch of meaningless numbers, anyone can win, it's stupid.' #Eurovision— ManicPixieDreamNick (@nixsight) May 14, 2016
So I love the new #Eurovision voting system, but I have no idea how to make the second half a drinking game.— Cat Tobin (@CatTHM) May 14, 2016
The new voting announcement system meant that the televotes were factored in only after these votes, in an effort to maintain the suspense of the contest.
Not everyone was enamoured with the new style, though, and many were disturbed by the glaring differences between jury votes and televotes.
The possibility that Australia could actually have won the Eurovision became a very real one tonight - and this, too, held its own controversy.
And, despite a cracking entry from the Land Down Under tonight, the country has to be specifically invited back by Ukraine.
If Australia wins a European song contest, I look forward to the next US president, Angela Merkel. #Eurovision— Philip Nolan (@philipnolan1) May 14, 2016
With so many Irish in Australia, maybe the Aussies will want to host the #Eurovision in Dublin...— Sinéad Burke (@minniemelange) May 14, 2016
Just tuning into the #Eurovision— Síle Seoige (@SileSeoige) May 14, 2016
Eh Australia is in the contest...am I missing something?!
Justin Timberlake provided half-time entertainment during the competition, opening his special guest performance with his hit Dance With Me before moving on to his new single 'Can't Stop The Feeling'.