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Protesters on Russian TV tell of 14-hour interrogation, may still face jail time

NEW YORK – An employee of a Russian state television station who interrupted a live news program to protest the war in Ukraine was released on Tuesday and fined around $270, but could still be charged. face jail time.

Marina Ovsyannikova told reporters that she was not allowed to sleep while in police custody and that she was questioned for 14 hours.

Ovsyannikova, a Channel 1 employee, walked behind the presenter on Monday night’s news with a poster saying “stop the war, don’t believe the propaganda, they are lying to you here” .” In English it says “no war” at the top of the poster and “Russians against war” at the bottom.

In a previously recorded video, she called on Russians to join anti-war protests and said that “Russia is an aggressor and one person, Vladimir Putin, is fully responsible for the act of aggression.” there.”

State news agency Tass said Ovsyannikova had been fined for the video and was still being investigated for the air protest under a law banning the dissemination of “intentionally false information” about the use of the Russian armed forces. The new law imposes a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.

Ovsyannikova, whose father is Ukrainian and whose mother is Russian, spent the night in police custody.

“These are very difficult days in my life because I literally went two days without sleep, the interrogation lasted more than 14 hours and they did not allow me to contact my family and close friends, no provide any legal assistance,” said Ovsyannikova.

The court ordered her to pay a fine of 30,000 rubles (about $270) for organizing illegal actions because of a call to participate in protests against the war.

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