ASTANA, October 14. /TASS/. Attempts to ban the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultures in Russia are unjustified, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday.
"Ukrainian is one of the official languages in Crimea, a Russian constituent entity. Ukrainian is an official language in Crimea along with Crimean-Tatar and Russian. So it is illegal per se," he told reporters, when asked to comment on a situation where a man had been taken into custody in Moscow the other day for listening to Ukrainian music.
The head of state noted that about three mln Ukrainians permanently resided in Russia. "So how can we ban their language and culture? It has never occurred to us to do so. I understand why this incident took place, it’s happening because of all of the emotions, but I think that many of our families know, listen to and love Ukrainian songs, Ukrainian culture. There used to be popular hit singles in Ukrainian in the Soviet Union and I don’t think that we should act like those who <...> suppress any culture they choose because culture has nothing to do with it all," Putin stressed.
According to RBC, Moscow’s Tverskoy District Court earlier ruled that Moscow resident Anton Usov should be taken into custody for 15 days and pay a fine of 50,000 rubles ($800) for listening to Ukrainian music after he had been found guilty of disobeying police and discrediting the Russian Armed Forces.