November 3, 2016 / 9:32 AM / a year ago

Russia's Putin grants Russian citizenship to U.S. actor Seagal

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed an order to give Russian citizenship to U.S. actor Steven Seagal, the Kremlin said on its website on Thursday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) shakes hands with U.S. actor Steven Seagal while visiting an oceanarium at Russky Island in the far eastern city of Vladivostok, Russia, September 4, 2015. REUTERS/Alexei Druzhinin/RIA Novosti/Kremlin

Commenting on the subject on a conference call with reporters, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Seagal has repeatedly asked for Russian citizenship.

Seagal is famous for his “warm feelings towards Russia” that he has never concealed, Peskov said.

“At the same time, he is a rather well-known actor, which became the reason for granting him Russian Federation citizenship,” Peskov said.

Seagal, who according to his own website is 64, is the latest Western celebrity who has been given a Russian passport in the past few years. In 2013, Gerard Depardieu, a French actor, was given Russian citizenship by Putin.

Reporting by Katya Golubkova and Andrei Ostroukh; Editing by Christian Lowe

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