Tallinn after a list of banned artists from the government

Kirkorov meeting with Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin in 2017.
Kirkorov meeting with Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin in 2017. Source: Kremlin

The argument surrounding the planned Tallinn performance of Russian megastar Philipp Kirkorov motivated the city of Tallinn to ask the government for a list of people Estonia cannot cooperate with.

Even though the organizer has not officially made the decision, many, including the city of Tallinn, have said that the May concert of pro-Putin Russian megastar Philipp Kirkorov in Tallinn should be canceled.

The city is against renting out the Tondiraba Ice Rink for the event, while this does nothing to stop the organizer from using a private venue, Deputy Mayor Kaarel Oja wrote in a letter to Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets. This is why the state should hand entry bans to persons it does not want to see perform in Estonia.

Oja gave the example of Latvia and Lithuania that have already banned several Russian public and cultural figures from entering the countries.

"Several persons handed entry bans had planned performances that had to be canceled. We would like to emphasize that this has always been based on state-level decisions as an entry ban is the only way to achieve the desired result (event cancellation). Estonian legislation includes necessary and proportional tools for laying down such sanctions," Oja wrote.

Oja said that Tallinn wants the government to bring entry bans and international sanctions against persons cooperation with whom in Estonia is impossible because of their statements inciting hatred or clearly expressed support of the war [in Ukraine].

Oja noted that local governments, entertainment and cultural event organizers want a clear government-level position and decisions on which persons justifying the war in Ukraine are sanctioned.

"The planned concert of Philipp Kirkorov in the Tondiraba Ice Rink has been the most visible example. The public has expressed strong opposition to hosting Kirkorov and other similar events, and thousands of signatures have been collected in favor of banning them," the deputy mayor noted.

Tallinn Deputy Mayor Vadim Belobrovtsev told municipal newspaper Pealinn in late March that Tallinn does not find the event suitable at this time and that negotiations to cancel it are underway.

A petition to ban the Kirkorov concert has been signed by over 6,000 Tallinners.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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