McDonald’s in Russia: 270-kilo man chains himself to the branch


This Russian doesn’t like that at all MC Donalds closes all branches in his country.

The pianist Luka Safronov-Zatravkin (31) chained himself to the door of a fast-food chain restaurant in Moscow at the weekend – to protest against the closures announced for Tuesday as a result of the Ukraine war to protest.

After his sensational action, he published a text on the Internet, writing: “With McDonald’s, different kinds of freedom came into my life. Freedom of choice, freedom to move, freedom to implement and follow my own values.”

However, Safranov-Zatravkin did not protest against the war of Kremlin dictator Vladimir Putin (69), but only against measures taken by the West, which also affect him personally.

“My weight is more than 270 kilograms. It is my choice, my means of freedom. So far I’ve been able to follow my own principles,” he continues. He absurdly described measures such as the closure of the McDonald’s branches as “genocide”.



The last opening day before the closure: A few customers on Monday in a McDonald’s in MoscowPhoto: AZ/AP

The pianist claims, “Now McDonald’s hamburgers are becoming a symbol of the violation of liberty.”

Historic McDonald’s launch in Russia

The fact is: McDonald’s in Russia – that had a strong symbolic power. In 1990, the first McDonald’s branch in the Soviet Union opened in Moscow. Back then, 30,000 people queued up for hours to bite into a burger.


Historical: For the Russians, the McDonalds branch in 1990 meant an unusual amount of freedom

Historical: For the Russians, the McDonald’s branch in 1990 meant an unusual amount of freedomPhoto: Stringer Russia/Reuters


Back then, people waited for hours to enjoy burgers and fries

In 1990, people waited for hours to enjoy burgers and friesPhoto: Anonymous/AP

Numerous Western companies have already closed or at least temporarily suspended their business in Russia because of the war and the harsh sanctions against Russia.

McDonald’s announced the closure of its 850 stores in Russia a week ago. Business would be temporarily suspended. The approximately 62,000 employees should continue to receive their salaries. The same applies to workers in Ukraine.


McDonald's boss Chris Kempczinski (53)

McDonald’s boss Chris Kempczinski (53)Photo: REUTERS

McDonald’s has been in the country for more than 30 years and now has “millions of Russian customers there every day,” the company said in a statement.

Because of the company’s values, however, “the unnecessary human suffering that is happening in Ukraine cannot be ignored,” explained McDonald’s boss Chris Kempczinski (53).

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