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Ukraine expels Russian journalist for ‘deceitful’ stories

October 5, 2017

Ukraine’s security service said Thursday it had expelled a Russian state television journalist for allegedly preparing a programme that hurt the “national interests” of the crisis-torn country.

NTV state television reporter Vyacheslav Nemyshev is the second Russian journalist to be deported from Ukraine in slightly more than a month.

Russian Channel One television’s Anna Kurbatova was kicked out for similar reasons at the end of August.

The SBU security service said Nemyshev had prepared a series of “deceitful anti-Ukrainian” reports that propagated the separatist cause of the two Russia-backed fiefdoms of Lugansk and Donetsk in Ukraine’s east.

NTV television said on its website that Nemyshev was detained in the Ukrainian capital Wednesday while he was slicing up a popular cake called “Kiev” for one of his reports.

It provided no other details but the dessert is made by a confectionary company founded by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.

Nemyshev said on NTV’s website that he was detained for five hours before being driven to the Russian border by security agents.

The Russian foreign ministry called the expulsion an act of “discrimination” that showcased the “repressive policies” of its neighbour and arch-foe.

The SBU banned Nemyshev from returning to Ukraine for three years.

Kiev accuses Moscow of plotting and backing a war in its industrial east that has claimed more than 10,000 lives since 2014.

The Kremlin denies any involvement despite overwhelming eyewitness evidence of its tanks and troops crossing the Russian-Ukrainian border into the war zone.

The information war between the two countries has pushed Russian state television off Ukrainian airwaves in territories controlled by the pro-Western government in Kiev.

But Kremlin-run TV stations still are widely available and provide the main source of news in the predominantly Russian-speaking eastern conflict zone.

Ukraine’s own television stations were taken off the air by the insurgency leaders near the start of the war.

Dispatches from AFP concerning freedom of information, censorship and news coverage in regions where independent media is under threat.