U.S. sanctions against Russia could hit a plannedMiley Cyrus concert in Finland like a wrecking ball.
Cyrus, Justin Timberlake and other U.S. entertainers have upcoming concerts scheduled at Hartwell Arena in Helsinki, Finland, but that venue is owned in part by three Russian tycoons with ties to Russian president Vladimir Putin. All three — Gennady Timchenko and brothers Arkady Rotenberg — appear on a list of Russian officials and businessmen that American business and citizens cannot provide with "economic resources," as a result of Russia's annexation of Crimea.
U.S.-based promoter Live Nation booked the upcoming shows. Representatives from the company says they plan to make sure the U.S. sanctions are upheld.
"We are examining the possibility whether this could have an impact on the shows by American artists at this venue," Nina Castren, chief executive Live Nation Finland, toldNBC News."We do not know yet if they will have to be canceled but our lawyers are investigating what it means for us and the venues." Castren says Live Nation expects to have an answer by Friday.
The U.K.'s Financial Times, which first reported the potential conflict, says Live Nation could be barred from completing financial transactions with the Arena. A lawyer speaking with the publication said the legality of the partnership between the promoter and the arena could depend on whether all the transactions for the shows had taken place prior to last month's issuing of the sanctions.
"If [Live Nation] still has to pay money for the use of the venue that could be a problem," Anthony Woolich, a partner at London law firm Holman Fenwick Willan told the Financial Times.
The Hartwell Arena website currently lists the Cyrus and Timberlake concerts on its website, as well as dates for shows by Aerosmith, Nine Inch Nails and other acts.