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Senior MP blames Ukrainian president for murder of Russian TV journalist

June 30, 2014, 18:09 UTC+3 MOSCOW
"It seems that an order was issued to snipers and mortar gunners to simply eradicate Russian journalists," Igor Morozov, member of the Federation Council’s Committee for Foreign Affairs, belives
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Anatoly Klyan

Anatoly Klyan

© ITAR-TASS/Channel One

MOSCOW, June 30. /ITAR-TASS/. The responsibility for the murder of Russian state run broadcaster Channel One’s journalist in Ukraine’s east on Sunday night solely rests on the Ukrainian authorities and personally on President Petro Poroshenko, a member of the Russian parliament’s upper chamber said on Monday.

Anatoly Klyan, 68, was among other journalists on a bus with mothers of military conscripts going to a pro-Kiev military unit in the Donetsk Region to demand the off-duty release of their sons, when the vehicle came under gunfire. Klyan, who worked as a cameraman for Channel One, sustained a lethal gun wound in the abdomen and died upon his hospitalization.

Igor Morozov, member of the Federation Council’s Committee for Foreign Affairs, said the murders of Russian journalists in Ukraine “became systematic.”

“It seems that an order was issued to snipers and mortar gunners to simply eradicate Russian journalists, who objectively cover the real state of affairs in the southeast,” Morozov said.

Channel One, reported earlier that besides its filming crew on the attacked bus there were also journalists from Russia’s REN-TV and LifeNews television channels. Russia’s MIR-24 television channel reported that its filming crew was also among the others on the bus. None of them were wounded in the attack.

The driver of the bus was also reported to sustain a gun wound but he managed to drive away the bullet-ridden vehicle with civilians to a safe place.

Morozov also said that “all responsibility for the murder of our journalist rests on the state authorities and President Poroshenko, who declared a ceasefire.”


Ceasefire does not work

Hundreds of people have been killed, buildings have been destroyed and tens of thousands have been forced to cross the border from Ukraine to Russia since April as a result of Kiev’s military operation against federalization supporters in Ukraine’s southeast involving armored vehicles, heavy artillery and attack aviation.

June 20, President Poroshenko declared a week-long ceasefire in the country’s embattled southeast and on late Friday he announced a three-day extension of the ceasefire. However, there have been numerous reports that the truce has been violated.


Other cases of journalists’ deaths in Ukraine

Klyan’s murder is another case in a chain of lethal attacks on journalists in the ongoing combat operation, which Ukrainian authorities are conducting in southeast Ukraine.

Two correspondents from Russian central television and radio broadcasting company VGTRK, special correspondent Igor Kornelyuk and sound engineer Anton Voloshin, were killed near the eastern Ukrainian city of Luhansk on June 17.

They came under mortar fire near a roadblock of militia as they were filming a TV report about people’s militias helping to evacuate refugees from the combat zone. Journalists bore clearly visible media insignia at the moment of the attack. According to eyewitnesses, a mortar shell exploded near the Russian filming crew. Sound engineer Voloshin died at the scene and Kornelyuk died later at a local hospital.

On May 24, Italian photographer Andrea Rocchelli and his Russian interpreter Andrei Mironov were killed in mortar fire near the city of Slavyansk.

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