Opposition blogger Rustem Adagamov announced Monday evening that he is withdrawing from the public council of the Culture Ministry because it is a “lie and a sham.”
In comments on his Facebook page, he wrote: “I officially declare that I am withdrawing from this ‘council’ of yours, because over the course of several months of me being there, I wasn’t given a single sensible suggestion on the work of any of the committees. I rate your ‘council’ as just another Potemkin village, a lie and a sham,” he wrote, signing it with the phrase “without any respect.”
His announcement comes directly after Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky told Dozhd TV earlier Monday that Adagamov would be expelled from the council in the immediate future for failing to show up to meetings and being “the worst of the worst,” Lenta.ru reported.
Adagamov is at the center of a scandal prompted by his ex-wife, Tatyana Delsal, claiming in an interview with Russia Today that he sexually assaulted a 12-year-old girl several years ago while living in Norway. On Jan. 11, the Investigative Committee announced an investigation into the allegation.
Adagamov has denied the claim and called it “nonsense.” Many opposition activists have come forward to defend him, claiming that the investigation is nothing more than a smear campaign orchestrated by the Kremlin to diminish the prominent blogger’s influence after he was elected to the opposition’s Coordination Council.