Marina Ovsyannikova, Russian anti-war TV protester fined for video title

The charges brought by a Moscow court were related to her video address that prompted others to protest as well, not to boycott television broadcasts.

Ovsyannikova appeared on the set of the evening news programs of Channel One of Russian state television, chanting “Stop the war!” and denouncing government “propaganda” – a stunning moment of public protest as the Kremlin suppresses any criticism of the invasion of Ukraine.

Before breaking into the group of Channel One, Ovsyannikova recorded a video message in which she said that her father is Ukrainian and her mother is Russian. She called the war in Ukraine a “crime” and urged the Russian people to demonstrate in public.

“Unfortunately, I have been working on Channel One for recent years, working on Kremlin propaganda,” said Ovsyannikova. “And now I am very ashamed. I am ashamed that I allowed lies to be told on television. I am ashamed that I left the Russian people in a state of zombies.”

Marina Ovsyannikova posted a video message on social media on March 14 that described Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as a “crime”. (Marina Ovsyannikova)

OVD-Info, a rights group that tracks protest activity and arrests in Russia, identified her as an editor and producer with the broadcaster and said she was in custody. Ovsyannikova’s Instagram account He also identifies her as an employee of Channel One.

During a press conference on Tuesday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov dismissed Ovsiannikova’s actions as a “riot” and said the TV channel, not the Kremlin, was “dealing with this.”

After her act of protest – such a measure in Russia comes at great personal risk, especially as Moscow has tightened its propaganda machine regarding the war – many leaders and international organizations have expressed concern for her safety. News spread of her missing after her arrest. Russian lawyer Sergei Badamchen, posted on social media the first photo of Ovsyanikova since her arrest; She can be seen with attorney Anton Jashinsky.

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She also spoke briefly to reporters after her court appearance.

Spokesperson for the UN Human Rights Office, Ravina Shamdasani, Tell Journalists in Geneva said the Russian authorities must ensure that Ovsyannikova does not face “any reprisals for exercising her right to freedom of expression”.

James Cleverly, Minister of State in the British Foreign Office, He told the BBC On Tuesday, the country was “concerned” for its safety.

“It shows a great deal of courage for these individuals in protesting what is, as we know, an oppressive authoritarian state,” he said. “It is really important that the Russian people understand what is being done in their name.”

French President Emmanuel Macron, who is in ongoing talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin as part of negotiations to end the war, said he would bring up Ovsiannikova’s issue during his upcoming conversation with the Russian leader. We will begin diplomatic efforts with a view to the show [her] Macron said: According to France24.

European Commission He said Tuesday, she praised the “persistent courage” of Russian citizens who oppose the Ukraine war. Spokesman Daniel Ferry said more than 14,000 Russian citizens have been detained in more than 140 cities across Russia for protesting the war in Ukraine.

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Ferry praised Ovsyannikova for her “courageous moral stance” and said she “disappeared” after daring to object.

He added that “the state apparatus continues to suppress the internal opposition, against the peace-loving local population, depriving them of their basic rights and freedoms.”

Kira Yarmesh, spokeswoman for imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, praised and praised Ovsyannikova shares the video on her Twitter account. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky personally thanked “the woman who entered the studio of Channel One” in one of the nation’s regular video updates, which was sent to Telegram.

Jennifer Hassan and Ammar Nazir contributed to this report.

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