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Hilary Swank asked which charities benefited from ‘Kadyrov birthday party’ fee

Sunday - Feb 19, 2012, 02:25am (GMT+5.5)
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London - Oscar-winning actress Hilary Swank has been asked to reveal which charities were the beneficiaries of her fee from attending the birthday party of Chechen president Ramzan Kadyrov.

Swank was heavily criticised by groups including Human Rights Watch for going to the lavish multi-million pound concert in Grozny in October, where she wished Kadyrov “Happy birthday” from the stage.

She later appeared on US television to apologise, saying: “I deeply regret attending this event. If I had a full understanding of what this event was apparently intended to be, I would never have gone.”

Swank, who won best actress Oscars for “Boys Don’t Cry” and “Million Dollar Baby,” later fired her manager and announced she would give her fee to charity.

Now, Chechen separatist leader Akhmed Zakayev, who lives in exile in London, has written to Swank, and her Hollywood agent, asking where the money has gone.
 
“I would like to ask you to provide me with official information about the charitable organisations which have benefitted from this money as a result of your public undertaking,” the Telegraph quoted him as writing.

“Many directors of humanitarian and human rights organisations dealing with Chechen issues have asked me about it.

“If the money transfer has not yet taken place, I would like to suggest that the money be used to promote peace and human rights in Chechnya itself,” he wrote.

He also invited the actress to a conference in Copenhagen in March to discuss the fate of displaced people, where she would meet “real Chechens.”

In a statement to The Hollwyood Reporter a spokeswoman for Swank said reports that she had been paid 500,000 dollars were “inaccurate”.

However, the spokeswoman declined to say which charities had benefitted.

She said: “Over the last four months, Hilary has been working directly and privately with various human rights organisations and other charities, giving both her time and financial resources.

“At the request of such organisations, and consistent with Hilary’s longstanding practice of donating anonymously, she will not be publicly acknowledging her contributions and efforts,” she added.





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