The Chief Administrative Court of Lithuania (GASL) on Wednesday rejected the complaint of the Russian artist Philip Kirkorov against the ban on entry to this country. According to the Lithuanian authorities, the singer’s public performances pose a threat to national security.
“The decision of the court of first instance was left unchanged,” said a spokesman for the court, Neringa Lukoševičienė. This decision is final and not subject to appeal, writes ru.DELFI.lt.
GASL approved the conclusion of the court of first instance and indicated that states have the right to control the entry of foreigners and their stay in the country. “The applicant’s behavior, his actions, as well as their nature, give grounds for the conclusion that the applicant really poses a threat to the security of the state,” the court announced.
Philip Kirkorov holds Russian and Bulgarian citizenship. And the applicant is prohibited from entering only Lithuania, therefore, his rights as an EU citizen to freely move around the territory of other EU member states and give concerts there by a court decision are not limited, GASL stressed.
On June 14, the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court rejected the complaint of Philip Kirkorov and upheld the decision of the Migration Department to ban entry to Lithuania for five years. The singer appealed against this decision and asked to cancel the court order and the ban of the department.
The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court concluded that the applicant’s actions posed a threat to the security of the state.
According to the court, the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a letter to the department indicated that Kirkorov is a popular Russian performer and producer who, due to his active concert and organizational activities, influences various social strata in Russia and the post-Soviet space.
In addition, his concert activities in foreign countries are openly called by Russian officials as an instrument of “soft power” of this country, Kirkorov constantly visits and gives concerts on the Crimean peninsula.
Kirkorov was blacklisted at the request of the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry. According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the country Gabrielus Landsbergis, the performer with his repeated visits to Crimea “deliberately denied the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and thus illegally justified the aggressive actions of the Russian Federation.”
Kirkorov’s participation in concerts in Crimea “significantly harms the national security of Lithuania,” emphasized Gabrielus Landsbergis.
In June, the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture and Information Policy, on the recommendation of the Security Service of Ukraine, added Philip Kirkorov to the list of persons who pose a threat to the country’s national security. The list has more than 200 people.
“You can’t ban creativity now. Music cannot be covered with paper or borders. […] We should be proud of what happened. In fact, this is not Kirkorov, this is Russia. Hatred of Russia is overwhelming, ”the artist reacted to the decision of the Ukrainian authorities. His comment was published on Instagram.
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