Putin says Elton John ‘mistaken’ over LGBT
Russian President Vladimir Putin has said Sir Elton John was "mistaken" about LGBT rights in Russia after the British rock star slammed Mr Putin's "hypocrisy" on the issue.
The row started when Sir Elton took offence to Mr Putin's comments in a media interview claiming that Russia has "no problem with LGBT persons. ... Let everyone be happy".
But Fox News reports that Sir Elton, 72, called the President's words hypocritical since a Russian distributor censored LGBT-related scenes from Rocketman, a film based on Sir Elton's life and career.
"Dear President Putin, I was deeply upset when I read your recent interview in The Financial Times," the Tiny Dancer singer wrote.
"I strongly disagree with your view that pursuing policies that embrace multicultural and sexual diversity are obsolete in our societies."
Dear President Putin,— Elton John (@eltonofficial) June 28, 2019
I was deeply upset when I read your recent interview in the Financial Times.
I strongly disagree with your view that pursuing policies that embrace multicultural and sexual diversity are obsolete in our societies. pic.twitter.com/wNG3imaR2r
He continued: "I find duplicity in your comment that you want LGBT people to 'be happy' and that 'we have no problem in that'.
"Yet Russian distributors chose to heavily censor my film Rocketman by removing all references to my finding true happiness through my 25-year relationship with [husband] David [Furnish] and the raising of my two beautiful sons.
"This feels like hypocrisy to me," Sir Elton said.
"I am proud to live in a part of the world where our governments have evolved to recognise the universal human right to love whoever we want."
But speaking in Japan where he was attending the G20 Summit, Mr Putin said: "I have a lot of respect for him, he is a genius musician, we all enjoy his music, but I think he is mistaken."
Mr Putin said Russian authorities had a "relaxed and unprejudiced" attitude toward LGBT people, but decisions about gender identity could only be made by adults and therefore minors need to be "left alone".
Russian law bans "propaganda of homosexuality among minors".
The President also said that while he did not deny the attractiveness of liberal values in general, he was referring to situations where they impinged on traditional lifestyles.
This story originally appeared on Fox News and is reprinted here with permission.