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Update: Artist who painted Putin in lingerie has fled Russia, seeking asylum

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A visitor takes a picture of the artwork entitled "Travesty" by Konstantin Altunin at an exhibition at the Muzei Vlasti (Museum of Authorities) in St. Petersburg August 15, 2013. Overnight on August 26 several art installations, including the "Travesty" that depicts figures resembling Russia's President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, were confiscated by the police from Muzei Vlasti and shall be checked for extremist propaganda. The museum, which opened on August 15, was closed after the police visit, local media reported. Picture taken August 15, 2013. REUTERS/Stringer

Not only has the risque painting featuring national leaders in women's underwear been seized by Russian police, but the Associated Press now reports that Konstantin Altunin, the artist behind the “Travesty” painting, has reportedly fled the country:

The director of St. Petersburg's Museum of Power, Tatiana Titova, said Wednesday that Konstantin Altunin left for France and was planning to request asylum there. Authorities removed four of Altunin's satirical depictions of Russian politicians on Monday and shut down the exhibition.

A police statement did not specify which laws may have been violated by the provocative works. A Russian law prohibits insulting state authorities. Another law bans so-called homosexual propaganda aimed at minors.

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