Vladimir Putin is a massive Elton John fan and the Kremlin sends him a happy birthday WhatsApp message every year, singer’s partner David Furnish reveals
Vladimir Putin would ‘love’ to meet Elton John and the Kremlin sends him a happy birthday message every year, the singer’s partner has revealed.
David Furnish said the Russian despot once said he would ‘love’ to talk with Elton John and the Russian health minister sends a WhatsApp on the singer’s birthday every year wishing him ‘all the best’.
It comes after Elton John slammed Putin in 2019 over his claim Russia had ‘no problem’ with gay people.
Furnish told the Guardian: ‘Every March 25, I get a WhatsApp message from the Russian health minister saying: “I just want to wish Elton happy birthday and we wish him all the best and love his music so much.” So, it is this strange paradox.
‘There’s nothing in it for them to send me a WhatsApp on Elton’s birthday. They’ve done it a couple of birthdays in a row.’
Vladimir Putin would ‘love’ to meet Elton John and the Kremlin sends him a happy birthday message every year, the singer’s partner has revealed
David Furnish (pictured) said the Russian despot once said he would ‘love’ to talk with Elton John and the Russian health minister sends a WhatsApp on the singer’s birthday every year wishing him ‘all the best’
Furnish added that Putin once rang their home landline offering a grovelling apology to the singer after two pranksters had called pretending to be the Russian leader in 2015.
He said: ‘Putin himself was so appalled by this that he wanted to ring up personally to say “I’m sorry this happened”
‘I remember the call coming in – the whole house froze. Vladimir Putin’s phoning the landline in your house. Perfect English.
‘He just said: “I’m sorry that someone phoned you up and pretended to be me because you don’t deserve to be, you know, pranked or treated like that.
“And I hear you would like to sit down and meet and talk with me one day. I would welcome that, I would love to talk to you.”‘
But in 2019 Elton attacked Vladimir Putin over his claim Russia had ‘no problem’ with LGBT people.
But in 2019 Elton attacked Vladimir Putin over his claim Russia had ‘no problem’ with LGBT people
In an series of Tweets, the British superstar said: ‘Dear President Putin, 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.
‘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 David and the raising of my two beautiful sons.
‘This feels like hypocrisy to me. 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.
‘And I’m truly grateful for the advancement in government policies that have allowed and legally supported my marriage to David. This has brought us both tremendous comfort and happiness.’
The Rocketman singer said he was ‘deeply upset’ by an interview the Russian president gave to the Financial Times in which he said liberalism had ‘outlived its purpose’
The Russian leader hit back and said although Elton was a ‘genius musician’ he was ‘mistaken’ over his views on LGBT rights in Russia – where it is a criminal offence to state heterosexual and same-sex relationships are equally valid.
Putin said at the time: ‘I have a lot of respect for him, he is a genius musician, we all enjoy his music, but I think he is mistaken.’
He added that Russian authorities had a ‘relaxed and unprejudiced’ attitude towards LGBT people, but decisions about gender identity could only be made by adults and therefore minors need to be ‘left alone’.
Putin had previously told the Financial Times: ‘I am not trying to insult anyone because we have been condemned for our alleged homophobia.
‘But we have no problem with LGBT persons. God forbid, let them live as they wish.
‘But some things do appear excessive to us. They claim now that children can play five or six gender roles.’
The Russian leader hit back and said although Elton was a ‘genius musician’ he was ‘mistaken’ over his views on LGBT rights in Russia