Bärbel Kofler, Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy, issued the following statement today (23 August) on the arrest in Saint Petersburg of the director Kirill Serebrennikov:
I have noted with concern that the director Kirill Serebrennikov was arrested yesterday in Saint Petersburg, and I am following developments in this connection very closely. Serebrennikov is an internationally acclaimed artist who resides part‑time in Berlin and works with various German theatre companies. Numerous members of the cultural scene in Russia and in Germany have expressed their solidarity with him in the past. The accusation of embezzlement is severe.
We now expect details of the charges to be presented and – if they are pressed – that he be given an objective, fair, speedy and transparent trial that sheds light on numerous yet unanswered questions.