November 10, 2023

A New Farewell to a Million Scarlet Roses


A New Farewell to a Million Scarlet Roses
Singer Alla Pugacheva and Comedian Maksim Galkin in Sigulda, Latvia. Maksim Galkin, Instagram.

On November 5, comedian Maksim Galkin posted a picture taken in Latvia with his wife, the über-popular singer Alla Pugacheva, seemingly confirming that the power couple had moved to the Baltic country.

Pugacheva and Galkin left Russia for Israel after the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, but she returned alone to Russia after October's escalating violence in the Middle East.

Shortly after Russia invaded Ukraine, the "Million Scarlet Roses" performer's husband was declared a "foreign agent" for his criticism of the Russian government. At the time, Pugacheva publically supported her spouse and asked the government the include her "in the ranks of foreign agents of her beloved country." Since Galkin is eligible for Israeli citizenship, the couple fled to Israel. 

Rumors swirled that the couple had left Israel after October's escalating violence, when a man who looked like Galkin was spotted at Tel Aviv airport. But the comedian posted videos of his and Pugacheva's children in a bomb shelter. The singer was nowhere to be seen in the recordings.

On November 2, Kommersant reported that Pugacheva entered Russia through the Pskov border crossing by train. The newspaper alleged she was in Russia to resolve undisclosed legal matters. On November 5, she was confirmed to be in Latvia with her husband.

Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov commented on Pugacheva's return, saying, "respectful and law-abiding [Russian citizens] can freely return to their homeland and just as freely leave it."

State Duma Deputy for Sevastopol Dmitry Belik has called for all Russians abroad who criticize the government and war in Ukraine to be stripped of their citizenship.

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