Accessibility links

Breaking News

Austrian Foreign Minister Says Wedding Car Signed By Putin Auctioned For Charity

Putin signs the car at the wedding of Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl.

A Volkswagen Beetle signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin at the wedding of Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl has been sold at a charity auction.

In an interview with the newspaper Kommersant on March 10, Austria’s top diplomat said the car was sold during the annual Light and Dark auction for 20,000 euros ($22,500).

"It didn't belong to us, we got it just for our wedding, and on the day of the wedding we told our guests that we want to sell it for charity purposes," Kneissl told the paper.

Kneissl’s invitation to Putin sparked a controversy that the minister said she expected.

Putin signed the white car and shouted "gorko," following a Russian wedding tradition before leaving.

The word "gorko" means bitter. Guests shout it at Russian weddings to prompt the bride and groom to kiss, thus sweetening beverages.

Based on reporting by Kommersant, Kleine Zeitung, and TASS.