Radio Liberty producer killed in missile strike on Kyiv during UN visit

Rescue workers inside a bombed-out apartment building on April 29, 2022, after an overnight Russian missile strike in central Kyiv. PHOTO: NYTIMES

KYIV, UKRAINE (AFP) - The US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty said on Friday (April 29) that one of its staff had died in a Russian strike on Kyiv during a visit by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

"Radio Liberty journalist and producer Vera Gyrych died as a result of a Russian missile hitting the house where she lived in Kyiv. The attack took place on April 28," the Ukrainian branch of the news organisation said in a statement.

Russia's defence ministry on Friday said it had carried out an air strike with "high-precision" weapons on Kyiv during a visit by Guterres.

Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko said in a statement on social media that rescuers had discovered the remains of one person in the rubble after the attack.

The statement said that Gyrych began working at Radio Liberty's Kyiv's bureau in early 2018 after spending time in newsrooms with Ukrainian media.

"We fight for freedom of speech. Russia has given itself the freedom to kill," Klitschko said in a tweet later on Friday.

Radio Liberty's editorial board extended its condolences to her family and said it would "remember her as a bright and kind person, a true professional".

The Committee to Protect Journalists, an international media advocacy group says that at least seven journalists have been killed in Ukraine since Russia launched its invasion on Feb 24.

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