(MOSCOW) — The U.S. Embassy has warned U.S. citizens who plan on attending Madonna’s concerts in Russia this week that there have been specific threats of violence that have been made against both “spectators and performers” for at least one of the shows.
According to a note posted on the U.S. Embassy’s website, both the U.S. Embassy Moscow and the U.S. Consulate General St. Petersburg have, “received information regarding a threat of physical violence against spectators and performers at the St. Petersburg concert on August 9.” Madonna is also playing Moscow on Tuesday night.
The note says that the information has been shared with Russian law enforcement authorities, who have, “indicated to the Embassy that they are taking appropriate measures in light of this information.” The message warns citizens to, “remain vigilant regarding their personal security, and to be aware of their surroundings at all times, especially in crowded areas.”
Madonna’s appearance in Russia has been controversial for two reasons. One, she declared her intention to speak out against a local law that bans so-called “homosexual propaganda.” Two, she’s also spoken out in support of the members of the Russian female punk band Pussy Riot, who’ve been imprisoned and are being prosecuted for inciting “religious hatred” due to a performance at an empty Moscow church that has been described as “blasphemous.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Sheena McKenzie, CNN
Ben Westcott, CNN
Georgia McCafferty and Junko Ogura, CNN
Holly Yan, CNN