Poster of Slobodan Milosevic at Moscow Movie Theater Stirs Controversy

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The poster featured a photo of the late Yugoslav calling on Russians, Ukranians and Belarusians to declare "war on Europe."

MOSCOW – A poster placed at an iconic Moscow movie theater featuring the late Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic calling for "war on Europe" stirred controversy in local media and prompted the theater's management to remove it.

The poster was put up inside the foyer of Illuzion, located in one of Moscow's "Seven Sisters" Stalin-era skyscrapers, next to portraits of Russia's most prominent film directors, including Sergei Eisenstein. It featured a photo of Milosevic, who died in 2006, during his trial for war crimes as well as a long quote from him calling on Russians, Ukrainians and Belarusians to fight Western Europe.

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The poster, which under the Russian law could be technically considered as "instigating national hatred," caused an outrage in the Russian media and on social networking websites, with many people wondering what "a war criminal" was doing next to the portraits of renowned directors.

The theater is owned by the state-run film archive Gosfilmofond, but the agency apparently had nothing to do with the controversial poster. The theater's director, Nina Borodacheva, was quoted in the Russian media as saying that the poster was put up by the theater's employees, expressing "their views." The controversy around the poster prompted them to remove the poster before any official complaint was made.