German clubs have been banning concerts by Ukrainian musicians, apparently because the venue owners think they are fascists, popular singer and politician Oleg Skripka claimed on Wednesday.
The Instagram post came after his band Vopli Vidopliassova was denied a show at the Indra club in Hamburg.
Skripka took to social media to claim that all Ukrainian bands are having a hard time performing in western Europe, particularly in Germany, explaining that it is because some “secret forces” believe Ukrainians to be Nazis.
“Ukrainian music has unexpectedly started meeting resistance from some secret forces in Germany. Our concerts are being canceled everywhere under the auspices that Ukrainians are Nazis and that Nazis should not be allowed to sing their songs in their native language,” Skripka said.
The singer went on to suggest that these “secret forces” were in fact Russian and claimed that this “corruption” was the work of the “long arms of the Kremlin.” He noted that the Germans supported Ukraine “only in words,” and that in reality the band’s contracts received no support from clubs and they were barred from performing.
Besides his music, Skripka has been active in Ukrainian politics. He is known for his support of the 2014 Maidan coup, as well as Kiev’s violent crackdown on the Russian-speaking population that followed it. In a 2017 interview, he suggested that those who refuse to learn Ukrainian language should be put in “ghettos.” After his remarks provoked a scandal, he claimed that his words were “twisted” by the media and that his suggestion was actually “ironic.”
Earlier this month, Ukrainian author Sergey Zhadan claimed to have faced similar issues last month when his concert in Milan was canceled after he announced he would be collecting money for the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The author says the cancellation was explained as being due to an Italian law banning “events where money is collected for war.”