Controversy in Russia over Holocaust ice dance


29 November, 2016

The wife of Russian president Vladimir Putin's chief spokesman has triggered outrage by performing a Holocaust-themed ice-skating routine on a Russian reality television show.

Navka's partner Burkovsky said that he was surprised by the negative reception of their routine by the internet.

Navka competed with her partner Andrew Burkovsjy on the Russian television show Ice age, the Daily Mail reported.

Although the performance was inspired by the Oscar winning film and was set to its soundtrack, many were nonetheless bothered by what was viewed as an inappropriate take on Jewish suffering. "Our children need to know and remember that bad time, which I hope, God willing, they will never know". The reality TV show, similar to Dancing With the Stars, pairs professional skaters with celebrities.

It is broadcast on Russia's Channel One, which is owned and controlled by the Kremlin.

Ukrainian skater Tatiana Navka arrives at the Chopard "Wild" party on the sidelines of the 69th Cannes film festival, on May 16, 2016 in Cannes, southeastern France. The 1997 tragicomedy by director Roberto Benigni tells of an Italian-Jewish man's fight to survive in a Nazi concentration camp.

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Their routine included freakish miming sequences which even saw Navka pretend to shoot her partner.

Dozens of others tweeted angry comments at the Twitter account of the Russian embassy in London. Navka wrote under photos from the performance on her Instagram, adding that "our children should know and remember that terrible time". One user wrote, "Tasteless. Are [you] mad?" Another added: "Words can not express how sick this is".

The routine was choreographed by 2002 Olympic silver medallist Ilya Averbukh, who is Jewish.

Navka, as with her original Instagram post, explained her true intentions.

But in the end she is killed by a bullet from the blue, leaving him screaming and shooting in mid-air.

Historians say the Nazi skilled 10 million Soviet civilians and prisoners of war in World War 2.

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