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Western silence encourages Kiev’s atrocities – Zakharova

The spokeswoman has highlighted Ukraine’s targeting of journalists

FILE PHOTO: Russian Foreign Ministry’s spokeswoman . ©  Sputnik / Sergey Guneev

International institutions that stay silent in the face of Ukrainian atrocities become Kiev’s accomplices in these crimes, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has said, highlighting the targeted attack on a Russian news crew near Gorlovka that killed a photographer and seriously injured two others.

On Thursday morning, an NTV crew reporting from Donbass came under Ukrainian fire near Gorlovka. Journalist Aleksey Ivliev, camera operator Valery Kozhin, and their Russian military escort were wounded. Kozhin later died of his injuries.

“Once again, representatives of the journalistic community and Russian media find themselves in the crosshairs of the Nazi regime in Kiev,” Zakharova told reporters at the regular press briefing.

She pointed out that according to some sources, the crew was deliberately targeted by a Ukrainian drone, which dropped a mortar shell on their location. 

According to Zakharova, international organizations from the UN on down have either remained silent or voiced “general concerns” about “this monstrous hunt for our correspondents,” practically becoming Ukrainian accomplices and encouraging further atrocities on Kiev’s part.

Read more Russian reporter dies of injuries from Ukrainian attack

“The blood of Russian journalists is not only on the hands of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, but also the international officials in Vienna, Geneva, Paris and New York,” Zakharova said. “I hope that now at least, the spokesman for the UN secretary-general, Mr. [Stephane] Dujarric, will not let this pass without comment at his next briefing, and will find the courage to say who carried out the attack, and condemn it.”

Zakharova’s comments came as Iliev, Kozhin and their escort were still undergoing surgery for their injuries. Kozhin has since passed away.

The 46-year-old camera operator began working at NTV in 2006. He had spent months at a time in conflict zones, including Syria and the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. 

Ivliev has reportedly survived the surgery and is recovering. The 56-year-old reporter has worked at NTV since 1993, mainly covering armed conflicts and environmental issues.

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