Over 10'000 people have had their party plans ruined in Ibiza after Sant Antoni council yesterday refused to give MTV permission to hold its annual rave party at the Son Rafael race track. MTV's Ibiza festival, which is filmed and broadcast across the world by the music channel, has become one of the island's and Europe's key events over recent years, but has been clouded by controversy. Over the past few years, residents' associations have complained bitterly about the noise and rubbish left behind by the 10'000-odd crowd, the vast majority of which are British. The last two festivals have been held in sa Pedrera, but the local authority last year ruled that MTV would not be allowed to return - hence why this year, organisers opted for the San Rafael race track. The mayor of Sant Antoni, Antoni Mari Tur, explained yesterday that the council has decidede not to allow the festival to go ahead after having consulted the municipality's resident associations. Antoni Mari Tur said that he feels that there is more than enough night time entertainment in Sant Antoni - perhaps too much - as it is. The organisers of the MTV festival yesterday expressed their surprise at the council's decision. What is more, with the council making this decision just weeks before the festival, which has already been extensively publicised, the ruling will cost MTV a sizeable amount of money in losses. The festival had been organised by two companies which have invested 500 million pesetas in promoting Ibiza, the island, and the festival MTV Ibiza 2001. “If at the end of the day the festival does not go ahead, a lot of local businesses with be faced with losses of tens of millions of pesetas - which is how much money the event generated for the local economy.” The festival has been given “priority billing” by all of MTV's eleven tv channels in Europe and this year the advertising campaign also involved a special feature on the island's traditions and typical features. Furthermore, directors of some of the world's leading companies have also been invited, not only to the festival, but also to get to know Ibiza in order to “realise the massive potential Ibiza has for staging such events, not only musical, but large conferences and congresses.” Festival organisers said that the local council's decision conflicts with that of the island's Insular Council. Only hours before Antoni Mari Tur announced the ban, the Insular Council had asked the organisers to modify certain aspects of the concert and also improve the security facilities and emergency services, “all of which has been resolved.” However, the Insular Council said last night that there is little it can do to save the festival if the local council has ruled that the event can not be staged. MTV had offered six million pesetas to buy new seating for the local church and fund other social projects in the village if local residents withdrew their opposition to the event, but it appears the local community is sticking to its guns. The festival would have been headlined by Faithless and Roger Sanchez and not only expected people from all over the Balearics, but from across Spain and some parts of Europe. The general mood in Ibiza this year, where the tourism numbers have fallen, is a somewhat anti rave culture with the local authorities worried about the island's wild party image. Tourism bosses are trying to re-establish Eivissa as a family destination and promote the island's culture and history - not its clubs.

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