Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Government Gets Gorbachev's Name Wrong in Birthday Letter

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev

The Russian government in an congratulatory letter to former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev gave him the wrong name, a screenshot posted Wednesday by journalist Lidia Kelly on her Twitter account revealed.

The screenshot revealed that Gorbachev was called Sergei in the letter published on the official government website Wednesday. The letter contained birthday wishes to the former leader from Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

The name was later corrected in a statement.

On Wednesday, the first and last president of the Soviet Union Mikhail Gorbachev celebrated his 85th birthday.

His presidency was marked by the end of the Cold War, the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan and the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world.

Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from domestic violence and LGBT issues to the climate crisis and a secretive nuclear blast that exposed unknowing doctors to radiation.

Please consider making a one-time donation — or better still a recurring donation — to The Moscow Times to help us continue producing vital, high-quality journalism about the world's largest country.