Vladimir Putin insists he has ‘no plans’ to meet with Sir Elton John
Russian President Vladimir Putin has denied he has plans to meet with Sir Elton John – despite the singer claiming he spoke to Putin on the phone yesterday.
Earlier this week, Sir Elton John – who has a large following in Russia – called for President Putin to meet with him to discuss his country’s anti-gay laws, saying: “I’d probably not [change his mind], but I’ll have a go! I’d love to meet him, I’d love to sit down with him and talk to him.”
The singer yesterday claimed that he had received a call from President Putin, writing on his official Instagram: “Thank-you to President Vladimir Putin for reaching out and speaking via telephone with me today.”
“I look to forward to meeting with you face-to-face to discuss LGBT equality in Russia.”
But in a bizarre twist, President Putin’s press secretary has denied that there have been “any signals directly from Sir Elton John” – appearing to cast doubt on the singer’s claims he spoke with the President.
Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s press secretary, told Russian news agency TASS: “We are aware [of John’s intention to have a meeting] from media reports, but we haven’t received any signals directly from Sir Elton John.
“Given that there have been many insinuations in the media lately, we are treating information of that kind carefully.”
However, he did not directly deny that the pair had spoken.