A concerned reader has reported to the Lithuanian news portal DELFI that he was approached by a man who offered him money in exchange for votes for Russia in the Eurovision final.
Allegedly the man was approached by two Russian speaking men when sitting with friends next to the White Bridge in Vilnius. The reader named Mindaugas, said in his letter to DELFI that the two strangers offered him and his friends 20 EUR each if they would send some SMS from their mobile phones using SIM cards provided by the two men. They then learned that those SMS would be votes for the Russian representative in the Eurovision final – Dina Garipova.
The Russian speaking men suggested him to gather a group of ten people and meet later at the same place. However the vote buyers did not show up at the given time. Never the less, Mindaugas managed to get in touch with them by the phone. The Russian buyer instructed him to gather a group of ten people and each of them should have five mobile phones. Once he had gathered the group he should call to arrange when and where to meet. They would all receive 20 EUR each for sending the SMSes. The person who organized the group would be rewarded with 50 EUR.
The reader of DELFI suggested two possible reasons behind this. First of all, Russia, simply, wants to get a better position in the Eurovision finals. The second reason, Russia would like to show that its influence in the former Soviet Union is still very strong.
The recorded telephone conversation between DELFI readers and the vote buyers could be found on the bottom of the original article.