MFA Statement on the Death of Journalist Andrei Stenin in Ukraine

Submitted on Tue, 09/02/2014 - 22:00

Russian Foreign Ministry Statement on the Death of Russian Journalist Andrei Stenin in Ukraine

We experienced a feeling of deep pain and resentment upon learning about the shocking circumstances of the death of Rossiya Segodnya photojournalist Andrei Stenin, who last called his editorial office on 5 August 2014.

We express our sincere and deep condolences to Andrei’s family and friends and sympathy for and solidarity with the staff of Rossiya Segodnya and the Russian journalistic community.

According to information made public by Rossiya Segodnya, including information based on the examination of Andrei Stenin’s body conducted by the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, there is evidence that this is yet another barbarous crime committed by the Ukrainian military and National Guard, who controlled, according to witness testimony, the area where the destroyed vehicles, including the car with Andrei Stenin’s body, were found.

We demand that Kiev conduct a thorough and objective investigation of Andrei Stenin’s murder and mete out severe punishment to the culprits. Russia has lost four journalists in Ukraine over the past few months, which is unprecedented, including compared to the other bloody military conflicts of the past few years. An end must be put immediately to Kiev’s illegitimate efforts to prevent journalists from doing their duty, including by attacking, murdering, detaining and kidnapping journalists from “undesirable” media outlets. We expect the international community, including the United States and the European Union member-countries, who seemingly care so much for the freedom of speech and media in other countries and regions of the world, to exercise decisive influence on Kiev in this respect.

How many more innocent lives must be sacrificed before Kiev stops its reckless and criminal policy towards millions of people in southeast Ukraine? Its Western patrons must review their hypocritical and double-dealing approach to the human rights disaster in Ukraine, the government of which is so eager to join “the family of civilised European nations.”