During her highly-anticipated Eurovision performance Saturday night, Madonna seemed to call for peace between Israel — this year’s hosts — and Palestinians.

Her set was undoubtedly the most controversial of the evening, but whether her statement will be useful in terms of de-escalating violence, is far less certain.

While she and guest star rapper Quavo performed “Future,” from her upcoming album Madame X, things got unexpectedly political. Two of Madonna’s background dancers, with their hands and arms locked together, turned to reveal the Israeli and Palestinian flags on their backs.

Madonna, 60, whispered the words “wake up” — which appeared in huge writing on the screen behind her — before falling backward off the stage, hand-in-hand with Quavo.

Eurovision officials released a statement distancing themselves from the stunt: “In the live broadcast of the Eurovision Song Contest Grand Final, two of Madonna’s dancers briefly displayed the Israeli and Palestinian flags on the back of their outfits. This element of the performance was not part of the rehearsals which had been cleared with the EBU and the Host Broadcaster, KAN. The Eurovision Song Contest is a non-political event and Madonna had been made aware of this.”

Just weeks ago, at least 23 people were killed in Gaza, including two infants and two pregnant women. Four people were also killed in Israel, including a father of four.

Hostilities began when two Palestinians were shot and killed by Israeli troops during weekly protests along the border between Gaza and Israel.

A sniper in Gaza also wounded two Israeli soldiers near the border during the demonstrations.

As the confrontation escalated over the course of the weekend, Hamas and other militant factions in Gaza fired nearly 700 rockets into the country. The Israeli Army responded with around 350 airstrikes, including its first use of targeted killing in Gaza in years.

Since Eurovision was hosted by Israel, many activists called for Madonna to boycott the event.

But the pop icon ignored such calls, saying, “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.”

Earlier in the night, she appeared in a pre-recorded message, warning the public “not underestimate the power of music to bring people together.”

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