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15th Mar 2022

Journalist fined £210 after protest against Ukraine war on Russian state TV

Danny Jones

Russian journalist fined over anti-war protest

Marina Ovsyannikova was thought to have disappeared following her stunt

The Russian journalist who stormed onto live TV protesting Vladimir Putin‘s war in Ukraine has been fined 30,000 roubles (£213) for her public anti-war statements.

Marina Ovsyannikova said she had “no regrets” after ambushing the Russian state TV channel Pervyi Kanal (Channel One) and holding up a sign that read: “NO WAR. Stop the war. Don’t believe the propaganda. They’re lying to you here.”

Ovsyannikova was arrested following the public protest and was feared to have gone missing after a human rights lawyer reported that she had not been heard from for several hours.

However, she has since been pictured with her attorney and has been fined for her actions after appearing in court on Tuesday, March 15, according to local media.

It is thought that the fine of £213 fine relates primarily to her video message in which she urged Russians: “Go to rallies, don’t be afraid of anything, they can’t imprison all of us.”

It is unclear whether she will face separate punishment for gatecrashing the live news broadcast. Leaving court, she told reporters that she was questioned for more than 14 hours without any access to legal help or the opportunity to contact her loved ones.

Ovsyannikova also expressed regret after admitting that she had worked for the network in recent years and feels “very ashamed” of her part in the “Kremlin‘s propaganda… and allow[ing] the Russian people to be zombified”.

Pervyi Kanal is the primary state TV network broadcast throughout Russia and has more than 250 million viewers worldwide; as per Russian outlet TASS, the channel is said to be conducting an internal review of the incident.

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