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Sport Robbie Williams selling his soul for World Cup gig - Kremlin critic

20:06  13 june  2018
20:06  13 june  2018 Source:   reuters.com

Fox bosses apologise for airing Robbie Williams' World Cup finger flip in the U.S.

  Fox bosses apologise for airing Robbie Williams' World Cup finger flip in the U.S. Fox TV bosses have <g class="gr_ gr_10 gr-alert gr_spell gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim ContextualSpelling multiReplace" data-gr-id="10" id="10">apologised</g> for broadcasting Robbie Williams' offensive middle finger salute during his World Cup kick-off gig in Russia on Thursday (14Jun18).&nbsp;The former Take That star flipped the bird at cameras as Russian leader Vladimir Putin watched the pre-ceremony concert at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium, just before host nation Russia took the field for their 5-0 drubbing of Saudi Arabia.

MOSCOW (Reuters) – A long-time Kremlin critic lambasted Robbie Williams for deciding to sing at the World Cup opening ceremony in Moscow on Thursday, while a campaign group offered to brief the British pop star on Russia’s human rights record.

Robbie Williams has been accused of selling his soul to the “dictator” Vladimir Putin after it emerged he will be performing in Russia for the football World Cup .

a person holding the hands up: FILE PHOTO: Soccer Aid 2018 - England v Soccer Aid World XI© REUTERS FILE PHOTO: Soccer Aid 2018 - England v Soccer Aid World XI A long-time Kremlin critic lambasted Robbie Williams for deciding to sing at the World Cup opening ceremony in Moscow on Thursday, while a campaign group offered to brief the British pop star on Russia's human rights record.

British businessman Bill Browder, who accuses President Vladimir Putin of conducting a personal vendetta against him, took to Twitter to question why Williams was performing while Russia was under western sanctions.

"There's lots of ways to make money @robbiewilliams, but selling your soul to a dictator shouldn't be one of them. Shame on you," Browder wrote.

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Who the hell are these muppets to demand that Robbie Williams pull out of Thursday's gig ? Robbie stated that it's his “boyhood dream” to open the World Cup in front of 80,000 fans in Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.

Robbie Williams is to open the 2018 World Cup in Moscow – just two years after Russian newspapers said he should be banned from performing there. Image caption Robbie Williams and his team celebrate after winning the Soccer Aid charity cup on Sunday.

Russia is keen to use the soccer tournament to signal that despite the sanctions, imposed over its 2014 annexation of Crimea and role in a rebellion in eastern Ukraine, it remains a top player on the global stage.

The singer's PR team declined to comment. However, Williams, who has previously sung at private parties organised by wealthy Russians, told Reuters he liked visiting the country and performing at the opening ceremony was an honour.

U.S.-born Browder was once a major investor in Russia. He has led a campaign to expose corruption and punish officials he blames for the 2009 death of Sergei Magnitsky, a lawyer he employed, in a Moscow prison.

The U.S. Treasury Department subsequently imposed its own sanctions under a 2012 law known as the Magnitsky Act.

Anthony Bourdain opened up about his 'unhappy soul' in an interview a year before he died

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"Shame on you". Robbie Williams has come under fire for his upcoming performance at the opening ceremony of the FIFA World Cup 2018. Earlier this week, it was announced that the ‘Angels’ singer would be performing to a crowd of 80,000 people at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium on Thursday

Robbie Williams is set to perform at the World Cup opening ceremony at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium on Thursday. He drew Kremlin criticism for his 2016 song Party Like A Russian and was forced to deny that derogatory references in it were about President Vladimir Putin.

Last year a Russian court sentenced Browder to nine years in prison in absentia for deliberate bankruptcy and tax evasion. Browder, who heads investment fund Hermitage Capital Management, has dismissed the allegations.

Human Rights Watch said it had called on world leaders to stay away from the event, pointing to Russia's rights record and its role in the Syrian war.

"We certainly see the way the Russian government and President Putin is using the World Cup and in particular the opening ceremony as a way of legitimising his power and his authority," the group's director for Europe and Central Asia, Hugh Williamson, said.

"We'd be happy to brief (Williams) on the human rights situation in Russia ... so that he's well informed when he gets there. He could also make a positive contribution if he speaks out during his visit," he added.

The tournament kicks off on Thursday with a match between Russia and Saudi Arabia.

Robbie Williams kicked off the World Cup by flipping off billions of people .
<p>Let him entertain you.</p>Everything was so happy in Williams’ performance that some people might be confused as to why he flipped off the world, but it’s a chance to be a part of history. This is your only chance to ever flip off a large chunk of the globe all at once.

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