A Russian TV employee interrupts the broadcast of the country’s main news during a demonstration in front of the camera

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A woman identified as an employee of one of Russia’s public networks interrupted her channel’s main news program by holding up a sign that read ‘No War’ and telling viewers not to believe Russia’s ‘propaganda’. station as millions watched on Monday night.

The woman was identified Monday as Marina Ovsyannikova, an employee of the Russian public network Channel One, by the independent human rights group OVD-info. The group said Ovsyannikova was arrested after the protest, and it is not known where she is currently being held.

Ovsyannikova walked out during the live broadcast with the sign that read “No War” in English and held it in the background as news anchor Yekaterina Andreyeva spoke about Western sanctions against Russia.

Ovsyannikova also appeared in a video published by OVD-info on Monday, stating that “what is happening in Ukraine right now is a real crime and that Russia is the aggressor”.

She adds that “responsibility for this crime rests only with the conscience of one person, and that person is Vladimir Putin.”

Ovsyannikova, who says in the video that her father is Ukrainian and her mother is Russian, wears a necklace in the colors of the flags of both countries.

She says she worked at Channel One “creating Kremlin propaganda” and is “very ashamed” of it.

Ovsyannikova then urges others to “come out to protest, don’t be afraid of anything. They can’t stop us all.”

His protest comes after Putin signed a law earlier this month that criminalizes what the Kremlin calls “fake news” with up to 15 years in prison. More than 150 journalists from around the world have left Russia since the invasion of Ukraine began last month, according to Russian investigative news site Agentsvo.

Her video statement was released before Ovsyannikova interrupted the TV broadcast at around 9 p.m. local time in Moscow.

His protest caught the attention of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who responded in a video message of his own.

“I am grateful to those Russians who keep trying to tell the truth, who fight misinformation and tell real facts to their friends and family, and personally to this woman who went into the studio of Channel One with an anti-war poster,” he said.

Michael McFaul, former US ambassador to Russia, called the protest unprecedented.

“I don’t remember anything like that,” he told NBC’s senior Washington correspondent Hallie Jackson on Tuesday. “This is not supposed to happen in authoritarian regimes.

“I think this sends a very inspiring signal that there are people out there willing to risk years in prison to try to stop Putin’s war inside Russia,” McFaul continued. “I think it’s important that the West understands too.”



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