French actor Depardieu slams Russia protest movement
MOSCOW (AFP) - French actor turned Russian national Gerard Depardieu on Sunday accused President Vladimir Putin's opposition of lacking vision and defended the Kremlin's treatment of the Pussy Riot protest punks.
Depardieu received a Russian passport at a Jan 6 dinner with Mr Putin that followed a bitter and very public fight with the French authorities over a disputed new tax on the super-rich.
The screen star has denied seeking to profit from Russia's flat 13 per cent tax on incomes and has never specified whether he intends to live in the country long term.
But he has been feted as a hero by Russian state media for offering the Kremlin a chance to highlight the benefits of its policies in the face of broad criticism of Mr Putin abroad.