A recording of the phone call between Sir Elton John and pranksters Vladimir Krasnov and Aleksei Stolyarov, also known as Vovan and Lexus, was released on Wednesday.
It reveals how Krasnov posed as Russian President Vladimir Putin and Stolyarov pretended to be the president’s press secretary Dmitri Peskov. Stolyarov translated Krasnov’s Russian for the duration of the call.
Elton John, an openly gay English composer and singer, visited Ukraine last week to discuss LGBT rights with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and hold concerts on Maidan Square in Kiev. The singer criticised Putin’s “ridiculous” record on gay rights and said he wanted to meet with the Russian president to talk about it.
On Tuesday, Elton John posted Putin’s photo on his Instagram account and thanked him for a phone call on Tuesday. The phone conversation claim was later denied by the Kremlin.