Lilia Gildeyeva revealed she had left Russia and resigned [Source: ALAMY/TASS via BBC]
When Marina Ovsyannikova burst into Russian living rooms on Monday’s nightly news, denouncing the war in Ukraine and propaganda around it, her protest highlighted a quiet but steady stream of resignations from Russia’s tightly controlled state-run TV.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has thanked her, appealing to anyone working for what he calls Russia’s propaganda system to resign. Any journalist working in what he calls the fourth branch of power risks sanctions and an international tribunal for “justifying war crimes”, he warns.
Some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s biggest cheerleaders on state-run TV have already faced sanctions, including Vladimir Solovyov who presents a talk show on Russia’s biggest channel Rossiya-1, and Margarita Simonyan who has accused anyone ashamed of being Russian at this point as not really being Russian.
Russia’s state-run channels are required to toe the Kremlin line, so who has quit in response to the war?
Hours after Marina Ovsyannikova’s on-screen protest, three resignations came to light.
Channel One colleague Zhanna Agalakova quit her job as Europe correspondent while two journalists have left rival NTV. Lilia Gildeyeva had worked for the channel as a presenter since 2006 and Vadim Glusker had been at NTV for almost 30 years.