MOSCOW, June 07. /ITAR-TASS/. Two reporters of the Russian Zvezda television channel were detained near Ukraine’s Slavyansk either by the Right Sector or by mercenaries, the television channel reports on its site referring to a representative of the people’s militia in the Lugansk People’s Republic.
The TV channel says on its website the two journalists - Andrei Sushenkov and Anton Malyshev - had entered Ukraine officially on June 4 for covering the presidential inauguration. Contact with them was lost after they were stopped at a checkpoint in the Donetsk Region on the way to Slaviansk.
“Those were people in black uniforms - which means they belonged to the Right Sector or were mercenaries,” the source said. “They may do anything - cut, kill, shoot, they do not care. They are worse than Nazis were.”
He continued saying the detention of Russian reporters was for the Ukrainian punitive mission a demonstrative action.
“They wanted to detain some Russian people, and they organised the detention. This is showing-off, no doubt.”
The source added the detained reporters could have been taken either to Kiev or to Lvov.
The television channel reported earlier on Saturday referring to a witness, the crew’s driver Ruslan Zaslavsky, that its two reporters, detained near Slaviansk, could have been taken either to Kharkov or Izyum, and during the detention they were made to wear balaclavas (masks) and were kneeled.
The management of the Zvezda (Star) television channel, which earlier said it had lost contact with its camera crew near the city of Slaviansk, asked Ukraine’s president-elect, Pyotr Poroshenko, to intervene to secure the journalists’ release.
“We are asking for support from the entire journalistic community in our efforts for the release of our colleagues,” the TV channel said in its statement.