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Ukraine war: Brave female TV editor wields ‘Stop the War’ sign on Russian state TV before arrest

A brave Russian woman ran onto live state TV news with a sign protesting Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

Marina Ovsyannikova, an editor on the Russian TV channel Pervyi Kanal (Channel One), held up a sign on the broadcaster’s main evening news show, Vremya, that said: ‘Stop the war! Don’t believe propaganda! They’re lying to you here! Russians against war.’

Channel One was the first station to broadcast in the Russian Federation after the fall of the Soviet Union and has more than 250 million viewers across the world. 

The news anchor carried on speaking before producers quickly cut to a news report to stop Ms Ovsyannikova revealing the truth about Putin’s war.

Marina Ovsyannikova, an editor on the Russian TV channel Pervyi Kanal, held up a sign that said: ‘Stop the war! Don’t believe propaganda! They’re lying to you here!’

Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, whose editor-in-chief is Nobel laureate Dmitry Muratov, posted a screenshot of the incident but blurred Ms Ovsyannikova's anti-war message, possibly for fear of reprisal

Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, whose editor-in-chief is Nobel laureate Dmitry Muratov, posted a screenshot of the incident but blurred Ms Ovsyannikova’s anti-war message, possibly for fear of reprisal

Channel Pervyi Kanal said it was investigating the interruption to its normal schedule at its studios at the Ostankino Technical Centre, near Moscow.

Ms Ovsyannikova was arrested by police working for the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs.

The reason given was for her ‘public actions aimed at discrediting the use of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in order to protect the interests of the Russian Federation and its citizens, maintain international peace and security,’ the TASS news agency reported.

Ms Ovsyannikova was arrested by police working for the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs

Ms Ovsyannikova was arrested by police working for the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs

Producers of the news show quickly cut to a news report but not before the protesting journalist made her point clear

Producers of the news show quickly cut to a news report but not before the protesting journalist made her point clear

Ms Ovsyannikova has a Ukrainian father and said before her actions today that she was ashamed to be peddling the Kremlin’s lies.

She said: ‘What’s happening in Ukraine is a crime and Russia is the aggressor.

‘The responsibility for this aggression lies with one man: Vladimir Putin.

‘My father is Ukrainian, my mother is Russian and they were never enemies.

‘Unfortunately, for the last few years I’ve been working for Channel One.

‘I’ve been doing Kremlin propaganda and I’m very ashamed of it – that I let people lie from TV screens and allowed the Russian people to be zombified.

‘We didn’t say anything in 2014 when it only just began.

‘We didn’t protest when the Kremlin poisoned Navalny.

‘We just silently watched this inhuman regime.

‘Now the whole world has turned away from us, and ten generations of our descendants won’t wash off this fratricidal war.’

She reportedly also said: ‘They can’t put us all in prison.’

After the incident Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, whose editor-in-chief is Nobel laureate Dmitry Muratov, posted a screenshot of the moment Ms Ovsyannikova went on air but blurred her anti-war message, possibly for fear of reprisal.

Marina Ovsyannikova (pictured) demonstrated on live television against the war. She reportedly has a Ukrainian father and said before her actions today that she was ashamed to be peddling the Kremlin's lies

Marina Ovsyannikova (pictured) demonstrated on live television against the war. She reportedly has a Ukrainian father and said before her actions today that she was ashamed to be peddling the Kremlin’s lies

Russian human rights lawyer Pavel Chikov tweeted a photograph of Ms Ovsyannikova. He said his legal defence foundation was helping her face the charges of 'discrediting the Russian armed forces'

Russian human rights lawyer Pavel Chikov tweeted a photograph of Ms Ovsyannikova. He said his legal defence foundation was helping her face the charges of ‘discrediting the Russian armed forces’

On March 4 Putin signed a law that effectively criminalises public opposition to or non-state news coverage of the conflict.

It was seen as another way for the Kremlin to curb widespread dissent over the war and cope with crippling Western sanctions.

If Ms Ovsyannikova is prosecuted under the law she could face three to 15 years in prison.

Russian human rights lawyer Pavel Chikov’s legal defence foundation is helping her face the charges of ‘discrediting the Russian armed forces’. 

While there have been protests against the war all over the West, the Kremlin has cracked down on any Russians opposing the war.

Even so, thousands of protesters have demonstrated in Moscow and commentators have tried to quell claims the war is anything other than a large-scale Russian invasion.  

Last week, guests on one of the country’s most-popular state TV broadcasts risked the wrath of Vladimir Putin to denounce the invasion as ‘worse’ than the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan which helped bring down the Soviet Union.

Karen Shakhnazarov (pictured) sought to bust the Kremlin's narrative that the war with Ukraine was a limited exercise

Karen Shakhnazarov (pictured) sought to bust the Kremlin’s narrative that the war with Ukraine was a limited exercise

Semyon Bagdasarov (pictured), called for an end to the war, citing his fear it could become a humanitarian disaster and comparing it to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, which helped bring down the USSR

Semyon Bagdasarov (pictured), called for an end to the war, citing his fear it could become a humanitarian disaster and comparing it to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, which helped bring down the USSR

Semyond Bagdasarov, an academic, used an appearance on Russia 1’s prime time talk show ‘An Evening with Vladimir Soloviev’ – a man referred to as Putin’s propagandist-in-chief – to call on the Russian president to end the attack, while warning allies like China and India could soon turn their backs on Moscow.

‘Do we need to get into another Afghanistan, but even worse? There are more people and they’re more advanced in their weapon handling’, he said, ‘We don’t need that. Enough already.’ 

He then added: ‘If this picture starts to transform into an absolute humanitarian disaster, even our close allies like China and India will be forced to distance themselves from us. ‘This public opinion, with which they’re saturating the entire world, can play out badly for us… Ending this operation will stabilise things within the country.’ 

Karen Shakhnazarov, a filmmaker and state pundit, also sought to bust the Kremlin’s narrative that it is conducting a limited ‘special operation’ in the Donbass region by referencing attacks on the capital of Kyiv – which is located hundreds of miles away.

‘I have a hard time imagining taking cities such as Kyiv. I can’t imagine how that would look,’ he said, even as Putin’s troops close in on the capital and launch attacks into the outskirts.

A previous experiment designed to show how quickly the authorities in Russia are clamping down on free speech amid the war in Ukraine was caught on camera.

Footage emerged of a horde of policemen descending upon a young woman in Manezhnaya Square in Moscow and dragging her away just three seconds after she held up a small paper sign.

The sign itself bore no message in support of Ukraine or any other issue in defiance of the Kremlin and the will of Vladimir Putin.

Instead, the sign simply read ‘TWO WORDS’ – but even this was enough to trigger a stampede of policemen clad in full riot gear who removed her from view in the blink of an eye.

It comes as the Kremlin introduced a blanket ban on social media over the past week, throttling Facebook, Instagram and Twitter – as well as Western media and independent news sites – as it scrambles to control the narrative around its incursion into Ukraine. 

Footage has emerged of a horde of policemen descending upon a young woman in Manezhnaya Square in Moscow and dragging her away just three seconds after she held up a small paper sign

Footage has emerged of a horde of policemen descending upon a young woman in Manezhnaya Square in Moscow and dragging her away just three seconds after she held up a small paper sign

The woman declared: 'I am just going to say ''two words'', before adding with a knowing smirk: 'Will they arrest me for this now or not?' as she raised her tiny placard. The sign reads 'TWO WORDS'

The woman declared: ‘I am just going to say ”two words”, before adding with a knowing smirk: ‘Will they arrest me for this now or not?’ as she raised her tiny placard. The sign reads ‘TWO WORDS’

Her placard had been in the air for a split second before a team of riot police steamed onto the scene, grabbed the woman by the arms and hauled her away in front of the stunned cameraman

Her placard had been in the air for a split second before a team of riot police steamed onto the scene, grabbed the woman by the arms and hauled her away in front of the stunned cameraman

The Kremlin has maintained the conflict is just a limited exercise to de-Nazify the country.

However, Russian troops and their tyrannical leader Vladimir Putin have been accused of war crimes as hospitals and schools have been bombed.

Just today it was confirmed that an injured pregnant woman and her unborn baby – whose image being stretchered from her Putin-bombed maternity ward became one of the war’s most shocking images – have both died.

Ukrainian emergency employees and volunteers carry the injured pregnant woman from the maternity hospital that was damaged by shelling in Mariupol on March 9

Ukrainian emergency employees and volunteers carry the injured pregnant woman from the maternity hospital that was damaged by shelling in Mariupol on March 9

Pictures of the unnamed mother-to-be in agony as she was carried from the Mariupol hospital appalled the world.

She had come under attack in the very place she had thought safe to bring new life into the world. 

This morning the doctors trying to save them both spoke of the huge efforts trying to save them.

Surgeon Timur Marin found the woman’s pelvis crushed and hip detached. Medics delivered the baby via caesarean section, but it showed ‘no signs of life’, the surgeon said. They then began work on the mother.

‘More than 30 minutes of resuscitation of the mother didn’t produce results,’ Mr Marin said on Saturday. ‘Both died.’

In the chaos after Wednesday’s air strike, medics did not have time to get the woman’s name before her husband and father came to take away her body.

Someone came to retrieve her, they said – so she did not end up in the mass graves being dug for many of Mariupol’s growing number of dead.  

The Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday and MailOnline UKRAINE REFUGEE APPEAL

Readers of Mail Newspapers and MailOnline have always shown immense generosity at times of crisis.

Calling upon that human spirit, we are now launching an appeal to raise money for refugees from Ukraine.

For, surely, no one can fail to be moved by the heartbreaking images and stories of families – mostly women, children, the infirm and elderly – fleeing from Russia’s invading armed forces.

As this tally of misery increases over the coming days and months, these innocent victims of a tyrant will require accommodation, schools and medical support.

All donations to the Mail Ukraine Appeal will be distributed to charities and aid organisations providing such essential services.

In the name of charity and compassion, we urge all our readers to give swiftly and generously.

TO MAKE A DONATION ONLINE 

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