World: Russian journalist fined for 'discrediting army'

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Former Russian TV journalist Marina Ovsyannikova has been fined for "discrediting" Russia's army.

She made international headlines in March when she held a protest against the Ukraine war during a live broadcast on state-controlled Channel 1 news.

On Thursday, a Moscow court fined Ms Ovsyannikova 50,000 roubles ($800) over comments she made on social media.

"What's going on here is absurd," she told the court. "War is horror, blood and shame."

Ms Ovsyannikova told the court the trial was designed to "intimidate" her and others who oppose Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

But she told journalists outside the hearing: "They haven't managed to intimidate me. I will keep coming out against the war as I have before."

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"The evidence confirms Ovsyannikova's guilt," Reuters news agency quotes the judge as saying in their ruling. "There is no reason to doubt its authenticity."


Video: Former state TV journalist found guilty of discrediting Russia's armed forces (Reuters)

Ms Ovsyannikova said she would appeal the fine.

Her landmark protest in March saw the journalist walk onto the set of one of Russia's biggest evening news programmes holding a sign which read: "No war, stop the war, don't believe the propaganda, they are lying to you here."

Ms Ovsyannikova refused to retract her remarks, calling the trial © Reuters Ms Ovsyannikova refused to retract her remarks, calling the trial "absurd"

She was fired from her job and fined 30,000 roubles ($480; £400) following what she said was 14 hours of questioning.

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Ms Ovsyannikova is due in court again next month in a different case on the same charges, relating to her social media posts. Repeated offences could in theory result in criminal prosecution, but her lawyer told the BBC this was not certain.

Since the war in Ukraine began, Russia has insisted it be referred to as a "special military operation" and has clamped down on protests and criticism of the war or the armed forces.

Such restrictions and the impact of international sanctions have led to a string of resignations in Russian media, both at home and among foreign journalists working for Russian news outlets in the West.

Western journalists, too, have been banned from entering Russia.

Pentagon says Russia has suffered as many as 80,000 casualties in Ukraine and lost thousands of armored vehicles .
An official said the figures are "pretty remarkable considering that the Russians have achieved none" of Putin's objectives from the start of the war.Roughly 70,000 to 80,000 Russian soldiers have been killed or wounded during the first five and a half months of the war, Colin Kahl, the undersecretary of defense for policy, said during a press briefing Monday, adding that the figure is "pretty remarkable considering that the Russians have achieved none of Vladimir Putin's objectives at the beginning of the war.

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