MOSCOW, February 26. /TASS/. Russia’s State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (VGTRK), Channel One, and the Ostankino radio house announced that they were leaving the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), a statement by the broadcasters said on Saturday.
"Channel One, VGTRK and the Ostankino radio house announce their exit from the European Broadcasting Union as a response measure to Russia being excluded from the participation in the Eurovision-2022 song contest which we view as an improper political sacrifice at the music forum which has always emphasized its non-political status," the statement said.
On February 25, the EBU made a decision that Russia wouldn’t participate in the Eurovision-2022 song contest which will be held in Turin.
Earlier, Baltic broadcasters appealed to the EBU to suspend or cancel the membership of VGTRK and Channel One over the situation in Ukraine. They urged the EBU to adopt a firm stance and use all available means to support and protect the people of Ukraine and its independence.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address on Thursday morning that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republics he had made a decision to carry out a special military operation in order to protect people "who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years." The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans of occupying Ukrainian territories.
Russia’s Defense Ministry reported later on Thursday that Russian troops were not delivering strikes against Ukrainian cities. It emphasized that Ukrainian military infrastructure was being destroyed by precision weapons.