UK

Karipbek Kuyukov, Armless Artist, 'Denied UK Entry' Because Fingerprints 'Of Poor Quality'

07/05/2013 10:05 BST | Updated 07/05/2013 12:27 BST
The Atom Project

An artist and anti-nuclear campaigner who was born without arms has claimed he was refused entry to the UK because he was unable to give fingerprints.

Karipbek Kuyukov was scheduled to attend a anti-nuclear conference in Edinburgh but reportedly received a letter from the British Consulate in Istanbul saying his "biometrics were of poor quality" and asking him to resubmit his application.

"Maybe they did not understand that I am disabled or check the information provided," the artist told the BBC.

"But in my online visa application it was written that I am an artist and that I don't have hands. I paint by holding a brush in my mouth and between my toes."

The Home Office said the application has not been refused, but could give no further details.

Kuyukov was born in Kazakhstan, in the village of Yegyndybulak, which is 100 kilometres away from the Semipalatinsk, the former Soviet Union's nuclear weapons test site.

He is one of thousands that were born with disabilities as a result of the nuclear testing in that region, and uses his art to campaign against the use of nuclear weapons.