Russian state TV protester gets two months' house arrest

Marina Ovsyannikova is seen inside a glass cage during her court hearing in Moscow. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

LONDON (REUTERS) - Former Russian TV journalist Marina Ovsyannikova was placed under house arrest for two months on Thursday (Aug 11) in a criminal case where she is charged with spreading fake news about Russia's armed forces, Interfax news agency quoted a Moscow court as saying.

Ovsyannikova has already been fined twice in separate cases for protesting against the war in Ukraine, including by interrupting a live national news bulletin in March, shouting, "Stop the war!", and holding up a placard telling viewers not to believe state propaganda.

In the latest case, she faces up to 10 years in prison if found guilty of distributing information about the Russian army that differs from government accounts.

It relates to a protest in July when she stood on a river embankment opposite the Kremlin and held up a poster calling President Vladimir Putin a murderer and his soldiers fascists.

"How many more children must die before you will stop?" the poster read.

Russia passed a new law against discrediting the armed forces on March 4, eight days after invading Ukraine in what it calls a "special military operation".

Interfax said Moscow's Basmanny district court had placed Ovsyannikova under house arrest until Oct 9.

Officials at the court could not be reached for comment.

Marina Ovsyannikova holds a poster which reads, "Putin is a murderer, and his soldiers are fascists. 352 children have died. How many more need to die before you stop?" in Moscow, in July 2022. PHOTO: REUTERS
Remote video URL

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.