Ahead of the Mikkeli Festival in Finland, Valery Gergiev has given an interview (in English) to Vesa Siren on the issues of the day. He ignores the Russian-sponsored corruption of the last Ukrainian government, calls the new regime ‘fascists’ and endorses the annexation of Crimea. (he has not visited the disputed areas; his information is Kremlin sourced).
On the anti-gay law, he says it has nothing to do with gays.
Click here to watch the video. Highlight quotes:
Valery Gergiev on…
Ukraine fighting: It’s a problem of Ukraine. Not of Russia. Ukrainian people kill each other.
In Ukraine (there are) too many Nazi elements. The other part of Ukraine don’t want to stay with the Fascists. Russia now takes tens of thousands of refugees from eastern part of Ukraine.
Soprano Karita Mattila’s refusal to work with him: Putin maybe doesn’t know who is Karita Mattila. Karita Mattila doesn’t understand anything in politics. Especially in Ukraine. … How will she look in the eyes of mothers whose children were killed?
Crimea annexation: I made one statement: the people of Crimea should be saved immediately. I was asked if my position on Crimea was to ignore, or to save people. I said of course we have to save them immeditately, (or) there will be thousands killed. It is absolutely true that Russia made it possible for Crimea people, who are big majority Russians, simply to save their lives.
The anti-gay law: It’s not anti-gay. It’s about propaganda in schools. If people want to attack Putin and think ‘let’s attack famous musicians’, what is this? I didn’t know about this law. I learned about this law in the West. Nobody in Russia knows about this law.
h/t: Vesa Siren