A monument to Mstislav Rostropovich has been unveiled in the centre of Moscow, reports the Voice of Russia. The bronze and granite statue of Rostropovich with a cello in his hands took sculptor Alexander Rukavishikov two years to complete. It was unveiled in the week of what would have been the cellist's 85th birthday.

Among the guests at the unveiling ceremony was Vladimir Putin, whose recent winning presidential campaign was endorsed by Valery Gergiev and Yuri Bashmet. Putin praised the cellist as a great musician and humanist, and said: 'I am proud that I knew Mstislav Rostropovich personally.'