Ukraine: Belarusian singer denied entry due to Crimea concert

max korzh belarus
Belarusian singer Max Korzh was denied entry into Ukraine on 17 February 2016 where he was due to go on his five-city tour in the country in early March, reported BBC Ukraine on 26 February 2016.

While organisers said the tour would be postponed until later in the year, press secretary for Ukraine’s security service Elena Gitlyanskaya stated that the singer would be banned from entering the country for five years because of performances he made in Crimea in 2014, reported Russian online news source on 26 February 2016.

Korzh posted a photo of his passport with the non-entry stamp from Boryspil airport in Kyiv on his Facebook page on 26 February 2016.

max korzh passport ukraine belarus

Conflict creates artistic limbo
The Russia-Ukraine conflict that began in 2014, leading to the contested sovereignty of Crimea, has left artists caught in the middle of a political struggle. Artists who have performed, or plan to perform, in Crimea, or who are seen as sympathetic to either side’s position has left their works and performances banned from being heard, screened or attended in either country.

In January 2016, Italian opera singer Alessandro Safina cancelled two scheduled performances in Crimea as the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture was prepared to cancel his other dates in the country if he went through with the shows in the disputed territory.

In the spring of 2014, Ukrainian band Okean Elzi and Belarusian band Lyapis Trubetskoy had their concerts cancelled in Russia as they were both seen as sympathetic to the Ukrainian movement.

In April 2016, Ukraine also banned all Russian films and tv series released since 2014 from being screened in the country, as an amendment to its 2015 Law on Cinematography that already banned Russian military genre films.

Also in early 2016, Ukraine’s National Council of Television and Radio Broadcasting removed 15 Russian tv channels from its broadcasting providers.

Photos from artist’s Facebook page


» BBC Ukraine – 26 February 2016:
Singer Korzh banned in Ukraine

» – 26 February 2016:
Max Korzh denied entry to Ukraine due to a concert in the Crimea

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