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Friday 31.07.2015 | Name days: Ruta, Rūta, Sigita, Angelika
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Russian singers added to Latvian ‘black list’ are shocked; plan to complain to Russian Foreign Ministry

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RURussian artists who have recently been added to the ‘black list’ by Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs have publicly criticized the minister’s decision on mass media channels.

Producer Joseph Prigozhin, who represents singer Valeria (Alla Perfilova), has announced that Rinkēvičs should resign. ‘What rights does he have to prohibit artists,’ – he said in an interview to RSN radio station. ‘It’s a provocation’.

The producer was especially shocked by the fact that the decision made by the Latvian government is completely unjustified. ‘There is no justification for this, no reason. The only thing they have is how somewhere, someone said something about some other country. No statements about Latvians were voiced by Valeria,’ – said Prigozhin.

He has also announced Veleria will complain to the Russian Foreign Ministry and international organizations.

In an interview to Russian Super.ru portal, Prigozhin mentioned that if he were Igor Krutoy (organizer of New Wave), he would boycott Latvia and cancel this year’s event.

Joseph Kobzon, who has been added to the black list along with Perfilova, has also expressed a surprise about this decision by the Latvian government. He now plans to contact Russian Foreign Ministry about this.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is currently away and cannot tend to ‘singers’ problems’. This is why Kobzon intends to contact the senior secretary.

In an interview to Russian Bloknot.ru portal, he complained that ‘no one can influence Latvian diplomats’. At the same time, the singer, who is also denied entry to USA based on alleged links to organized crime, has called the Latvian Foreign Minister a ‘fool’.

BNN had previously reported that Rinkēvičs has made the decision to add famous Russian singers Oleg Gazmanov, Joseph Kobzon and Alla Perfilova to Latvia’s list of ‘personae non gratae’. It should be said that Kobzon is added to this list for the second time.

Kobzon is forbidden to enter USA, Canada, Australia and several European countries.

Ref: 102.109.109.9523


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  1. mike walsh says:

    How bloody petty; what next,the burning of the books. I fear the Latvian peoples, who I love, are as betrayed now as they were when they were pushed under the wheels of the Red juggernaut by Roosevelt and Churchill.

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  2. Oddis says:

    Can someone please tell me what exactly this “black list” is? Pesona non grata or just a watch list?

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  3. Paul Berzkalns says:

    Mike – as an ex-pat who has lived in Latvia for 15 years, I’d like to let you know how disgusted I have been with the Jaunais Vilnis concerts. I cannot imagine people in England or the US would accept this kind of show in their country. First if all the entire show takes place in Russian-the national language here is Latvian. Second, even though it has gotten better-in previous years the emcees have done their best to denigrate Latvia and latvians. Statements such as you really are part of Russia – can’t you get over the farce of acting like you are an independent country, and worse has echoed from the stage. The event is staged for Russians by Russians. In my opinion it has no place in a country that was occupied for 50 years and is free from the tyranny that the Kremlin’s current leader would like to re-establish.

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    • mike walsh says:

      Paul, banning a concert is a slippery slope. Irish, I am the son of passionate Republicans. My (American) sister gloated at the spot in Belfast where a 17-year old soldier’s life had ebbed away. I am offended by that kind of foul hatred.

      In England, tolerated are concerts put on by Irish Republicans (and Asians) that can only be described as hate fests. On a more benign note every ethnic group I can think of, European or otherwise, put on concerts primarily for the pleasure of their own ethnic group.

      Would you have the Baltic States’ ethnic Russians pilloried for the sins of their fathers and grandparents? What next, all those of European ethnicity ethnically cleansed from Africa? As I say, a slippery, racist and very dangerous course.

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      • Brian says:

        As I have previously stated, all Russian citizens should have their visas denied when visiting civilized countries, especially countries which they have previously invaded, murdered anyone they thought had the intelligence to organize oppose them, stole real estate, sent civilians as slave labour to
        Russia, and LIED that the population requested that they do so.

        Latvians have kept their language and traditions in spite of the terrorists who invaded them at the end of WW2.

        They have the right to exclude anyone from entering their country, and should also have the power to remove and deport anyone who opposes a free Latvia.

        This is not petty, just the beginning of a Latvia for Latvians and those who support a free Latvia.

        You think anyone in Russia who stated Latvian should be a second language and said that they are being persecuted because it was not, would be supported by Putin.

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      • Alex Davies says:

        Irish Republicans, both paramilitary and political, were banned from speaking on UK TV for many years, their movements restricted, their homes bugged.

        Whilst the British tolerated the Irish as a people, they stood up against those who murdered and called for the subjugation of others in the Irish community. Cultural events in the UK are accepted because the UK was usually the conqueror/imperial power and the minorities moved to the UK at the request of the British.

        The fact that this is an event in a 3rd party country means that those who are politically active against the ideals of that host country must be shown that the host will not accept this voice.

        If the economic argument is forcing the acceptance of New Wave then, transform Positivus into a mini-Glastonbury, where over 120,000 attend for three days and the local economy, whilst the roads are blocked for a while, benefits to the tune of nearly 60m.

        I set up and run a company in Latvia, I do not expect my employees to speak English to me, they speak Latvian and I wreck it no end in my attempts to try to speak it, but they know that I at least have some respect for their homeland and national pride.

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  4. Mr Cool says:

    Absurd-

    Latvia, wake up! Do not take orders directly from the US!

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    • Tom says:

      It’s a shame for Latvia to allow the New Wave circus this year, and celebrate the Russian sponsored mass-murder of almost 300 innocent civilians.

      The majority of Russians who visit New wave is not the kind of people we want to see in Latvia.

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  5. I says:

    Latvians grow up! You are poor because you dwell with the past. Please let us all feel included in a new Latvian identity, or at least as visitors to your country.

    Become a hub between West and Russia. Make Russian and English official languages and treat foreigners as valuable partners whatever their language, religion and race is.

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    • Foreigner says:

      Some words of wisdom from “I”.

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    • LinDA says:

      yes gd idea could ditch French and german completely in England too, and learn all other languages of the eu and Russian always good to know other languages. Would the Russians learn these too?

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    • jj says:

      Latvia is already hub between East and West – with banking; with Air Baltic specifically aiming to be a hub (have you travelled with them recently and seen the number of passengers transferring to/from CIS countries?); with offering Schengen visas to foreigners (primarily from Russia) buying property in Latvia. I am sure there are other things they can do – what else would you suggest?

      With regard to the language, making English an official language would be absurd. There is more logic perhaps for Russian, but how long then before the Latvian language completely disappears? I have been here running businesses for 20 years and despite dreadful Latvian and no Russian I have had no problem whatsoever communicating both with the State and with other people and businesses, in English. For Russians it is even easier – Russian is a de facto official language anyway.

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      • Foreigner says:

        Correct me if I’m wrong, but the Baltic banks mainly cater for Russians. And for Air Baltic, how long can it survive?

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        • jj says:

          I can only comment about Latvia with regard to the banks, but although some banks do attract ‘rich Russians’, certainly the biggest banks (Swedbank etc.) do not ‘mainly cater for Russians’ at all.

          With regard to Air Baltic – now that Mr Flick is well gone, and that at last it is making a profit, I do not see a problem. There have been prophets of doom for years now! I think that most likely one of the big players will take a stake in them and that their future will then be very secure.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Russia cancelled ukranian musicians. Valeria signed all disgusting letters supporting aggression of ukraine, called for annexation, called people of ukraine fascists, etc. Why does she want to go fascist country?
    Why would any of them wish to go to “fascist” country?
    Either or, guys.

    They earned tons of money in Latvia before, and a month later they called the fascists. Let them pay.

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