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Sting says the days of performing private gigs for Russian billionaires 'are over'

Rock legend Sting says the days of musicians performing private shows for oligarchs are over.

He played at a private gig for the family of a Russian tycoon in 2016 – five years before he was sanctioned by the EU.

Speaking to the Mirror yesterday, Sting said: “No oligarch in Britain, Russia or anywhere else is in any position to book a gig, a wedding or a party. Those days are over.”

The singer played at the $1billion wedding of Mikhail Gutseriev’s son Said in Moscow, where he performed alongside Jennifer Lopez.

Mikhail Gutseriev was sanctioned by the EU last year for his close ties with Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko.

Sting's spokesperson said the singer is 'appalled' at the Ukraine invasion (


Getty Images)

Downing Street said this week that Mikhail Gutseriev had been previously sanctioned under the “Belarus sanctions regime”.

No10 describes him as a “long-standing associate of Lukashenko, who is responsible for serious violations of human rights and the repression of civil society and democratic opposition in Belarus”.

It added: “Gutseriev provided support for the Government of Belarus, including through his business interests.”

Sting’s spokesman added the star is “appalled” at the Ukraine invasion and will not play any shows for anyone connected to the Putin regime.

The singer pictured in the past with Mikhail Gutseriev’s son Said

This week, the star posted a video on Instagram of himself singing his 1985 Cold War song Russians, which he said was more relevant than ever due to the war in Ukraine.

He hit out at “one man’s bloody and woefully misguided decision to invade a peaceful” neighbour.

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