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Lipgoss: Stars Who Party With Dictators

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HILARY SWANK
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Wasting our life on pop culture blogs and gossip sites, so you don't have to.

Hilary Swank, we know whose party you went to last weekend. And you are GROUNDED, young lady.

Okay, so Hilary isn't really grounded, but the internet is very, very angry with her. On October 5th the Million Dollar Baby actress attended a massive birthday bash for Ramzan Kadyrov, the Chechen President accused of human rights violations such as torture, abductions and mass killings, as well as of using his power to try and silence human rights defenders in the Russian province. Oh, and his security forces routinely threaten women who don't wear a headscarf in public. How could a gal refuse?

So Hilary got up onstage and gushingly wished this boorish, drunken and tragically powerful leader a happy birthday, reportedly in return for a six-figure sum. Hilary wasn't the only famous fake friend in attendance; Jean Claude Van Damme, Vanessa Mae and Seal pimped themselves out in a similar fashion. Party on!

Human Rights Watch has sensibly called on this motley party crew to return or re-gift the pile of dirty cash they received in return for their morally questionable brown-nosing, stating: "Ramzan Kadyrov is linked to a litany of horrific human rights abuses. It's inappropriate for stars to get paid to party with him. It bolsters his image and legitimizes a brutal leader and his regime. And getting paid to be part of such a lavish show in Chechnya trivializes the suffering of countless victims of human rights abuses there."

To be fair to Hilary, she's issued a pretty sincere apology: "I deeply regret attending this event... If I had a full understanding of what this event was apparently intended to be, I would never have gone." We feel like this almost every time we attend a party in Dalston, so we can sympathise. A little.

Actually, Hilary is golden in comparison to Jean Claude Van Damme, who bellowed, "I love you Mr. Kadyrov" from the stage and has yet to respond to the controversy.

You know what the worst bit is? Well, obviously the worst bit is the fact that Kadyrov exists and is in power. But do you know what the second worst bit is? The party sounds truly shit. Even if there wasn't a heinous political leader in attendance, you could not pay me enough to show up. Vanessa Mae gives me the major creeps.

Of course, stars partying with dictators is nothing new. Beyonce, Mariah Carey and Nelly Furtado have all grooved for the Gaddafi family, and subsequently returned the cash, red-faced.

Here's a handy gallery of stars who have danced for dictators, whilst The Telegraph has a fascinating account of just how these corrupt superfans manage to procure the performer of their choice.

Rihanna Attends A Less Controversial Party

On the plus side, all this Chechen stuff makes Rihanna's attendance at a strip club seem really lame.

Amazingly, Russell Crowe and Naomi Campbell Do NOT Throw Their Phones At Their Minions

Got a Blackberry? You'll have been seriously bummed by the mid-week outage. So were celebrities, as Jezebel.com helpfully illustrate in their eternally handy Tweetbeat celebrity Twitter roundup.