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Moscow Court Upholds House Arrest For Theater Director Serebrennikov

Russian theater and film director Kirill Serebrennikov in court on December 4.

The Moscow City Court has upheld a lower court’s decision to extend the house arrest for renowned Russian theater director Kirill Serebrennikov, whose detention on fraud charges stunned the Russian artistic world and elicited support internationally.

According to Moscow's Basmanny District Court's October 17 decision, Serebrennikov should remain under house arrest until January 19.

The 48-year-old director of Moscow’s famed Gogol Theater was arrested in August and accused of embezzling some $1 million in state funds. He has called the charges absurd.

In addition to his theatrical work, Serebrennikov is a respected filmmaker.

Before his arrest, he clashed with Russia’s Culture Ministry over the staging of a ballet about legendary Soviet ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev, who defected to the West in 1961.

Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky suggested that production might violate a 2013 "gay propaganda" law.

Based on reporting by TASS and Interfax