Top Russian TV Editor Heckles Putin on Live Show, Warns Viewers of 'Propaganda'
Marina Ovsyannikova stormed set of live broadcast, yelling and holding banner
An editor at Russia's leading propaganda TV news station has stormed the set of a live show to warn viewers that reporters "are lying to you" while heckling Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The woman, identified as Channel One Russia editor Marina Ovsyannikova, crashed the live broadcast holding a large banner and yelled out warnings to the viewers.
She rushed onto the set standing behind the anchor and chanted in Russian, "No to war! Stop the war!"
Ovsyannikova's sign read in Russian, "Stop the war! Don’t believe propaganda! They’re lying to you here! They can't put us all in prison!"
It also said "Russians against war" written in English.
The broadcast immediately cuts away to a pre-recorded report but only after Ovsyannikova sent her message to the viewers, and her warning to Putin, loud and clear.
The anchor, Ekaterina Andreeva, is seen as an iconic figure in Russian media.
Apparently, a woman just ran onto the stage during a Russian state television news broadcast with a sign that said, “Stop the war! Don’t believe propaganda! They’re lying to you here!” pic.twitter.com/nn5XWsh4Wn— Kevin Rothrock (@KevinRothrock) March 14, 2022
Ovsyannikova released a video statement before her stunt to denounce Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"What’s happening in Ukraine is a crime and Russia is the aggressor," Ovsyannikova said in Russian.
"And there is only one person responsible for this, this man is Vladimir Putin.
"My father is Ukrainian, and my mother is Russian, they have never been enemies, and this necklace is a symbol – that Russia must immediately stop this war and our brotherly nations can still come together.
"Sadly, I’ve been working on Channel One during the last couple of years, have been doing Kremlin propaganda, for which now I am very ashamed," Ovsyannikova said.
"I am ashamed that I let lies be spread on television, I’m ashamed that I participated in turning Russian people into zombies, we kept quiet when it all started in 2014, we did not rally when Kremlin poisoned Navalny, we have silently been watching this anti-human regime, and now, the whole world turned back to us, next 10 generations will not be able to get rid of the shame of this war."
Перед акцией в прямом эфире Овсянникова записала видео с извиниениями за участие в пропаганде и требованием остановить братоубийственную войну. pic.twitter.com/UwGh9ymW3K— SOTA (@SotaVision) March 14, 2022
Channel One released a statement saying is investigating the incident.
As highlighted by Kevin Rothrock of the Russian-English-language independent outlet Meduza, Ovsyannikova faces misdemeanor charges and that can possibly result in a "few days in jail" rather than a prison sentence, according to a report by Russian-state news agency TASS.
Ovsyannikova's "bravery" was hailed on social media, many comparing her to the iconic "tank man" protestor who famously stood in front of military tanks in Tiananmen Square to protest China in 1989.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has praised Ovsyannikova's actions.
"I am grateful to those Russians who do not stop trying to convey the truth," Zelensky said in a Telegram video uploaded Tuesday, CNN reported.
"To those who fight disinformation and tell the truth, real facts to their friends and loved ones."
The president also spoke directly to Ovsyannikova in his message.
"And personally to the woman who entered the studio of Channel One with a poster against the war," Zelensky said.
"To those who are not afraid to protest.
"As long as your country has not completely closed itself off from the whole world, turning into a very large North Korea, you must fight.
"You must not lose your chance."