One of Russia’s most popular singers, Alla Pugacheva, has called on the Russian authorities to declare her a “foreign agent”, in solidarity with her strongly anti-war husband Maxim Galkin.
A showbiz star too, he was labelled a “foreign agent” on Friday after condemning Russia’s attack on Ukraine.
On social media Pugacheva called her husband “a true incorruptible Russian patriot, who wants… an end to our lads dying for illusory aims”.
She has been a big star for decades.
She said the Kremlin’s “illusory aims” in Ukraine “make our country a pariah and the lives of our citizens extremely difficult”.
Galkin, a comedian, TV presenter and singer, wanted “prosperity for his motherland, peace, free speech”, she added.
The label “foreign agent” has been applied by the Russian government to various media organisations, campaign groups and individuals openly critical of Kremlin policies.
Alla Pugacheva has been a musical megastar here for decades. First, in the Soviet Union, where she began her career in the 1960s; then, after the fall of the USSR, in Russia.
She is a hugely popular and well-respected artist, which makes her public comments about Russia’s offensive in Ukraine big news.
Her assertion that “our lads are dying for illusory aims that make our country a pariah and the lives of our citizens extremely difficult” is likely to infuriate the Kremlin.
It remains to be seen whether it will have any effect on Russian public opinion over what the Kremlin still calls its “special military operation”.