Pink Floyd's Roger Waters declared 'persona non grata' in Poland

Pink Floyd's Roger Waters declared 'persona non grata' in Poland
Roger Waters has joined a long list of musicians that have been banned from certain places. Kraków declared the Pink Floyd co-founder 'persona non grata' for his controversial views on the war in Ukraine, which led to a cancellation of his concerts in the Polish city earlier this week. On Wednesday (28 September), the city council adopted a resolution “on recognising people supporting the Kremlin regime as persona non grata in Kraków,” reports the Polish Press Agency (PAP). Waters was the only person mentioned by name in the document.“Bearing in mind the criminal attack by Russia on Ukraine, as well as the coming to light of war crimes committed by Russian soldiers, the councillors express indignation at the theses and statements made by Mr Roger Waters related to the Russian invasion of Ukraine,” reads the resolution.It also notes that, as a partner city of Lviv and Kyiv in Ukraine, Kraków “has a special duty to take a stance against the promotion of disinformation defaming the Ukrainian nation.”"We don't want people in Kraków who take a stand for Russia in war information and support or repeat Putin's propaganda," said Kraków city councillor Michal Drewnicki. He added that the council's decision to declare Waters persona non grata was unanimous, though not legally binding.  

The English musician got into hot water after writing an open letter earlier this month, in which he called on the West to stop arming Ukraine and urged Zelenskyy to put an end to the "deadly war." He also accused the Ukrainian President of tolerating "extreme nationalism" - echoing a largely unsubstantiated line of Russia's that its invasion was needed to remove the threat posed by an extremist government in Kyiv.  Two of Waters's concerts in Kraków scheduled to take place in 2023 were cancelled last Saturday, with the city councillor Lukasz Wantuch saying: "Let him sing in Moscow".

Waters appears undeterred by the spate.Speaking in front of 20,000 spectators at a gig in Los Angeles (LA), where he stopped on Tuesday and Wednesday, the rock icon said: "If you're here because you love Pink Floyd, but you can't stand Roger Waters' politics, f**k off at the bar."This year's tour -- entitled "This is Not a Drill" -- has echoed previous political stunts, with Waters making long speeches at the end of his shows and repeatedly slamming the rich and powerful. An inflatable pig, from the Pink Floyd album "Animals", adorned his stage decoration in LA, which had "f**k the poor" and "steal from the poor, give to the rich" written on it.Tickets to the concert fetched between 500 and 4,500 dollars at resale, while AFP reporters pointed out a bottle of mezcal was often filmed on Waters' piano. During his last tour between 2017/18, Waters' main target was US President Donald Trump, who was made up as a prostitute on a pig floating in the air above the audience. 

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