Marina Ovsyannikova: 5 Things About The Russian Journalist Who Protested The Ukrainian War

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked the journalist for her bravery in speaking out against the Russian war on TV.

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Image Credit: DSK/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

While the Russian war against Ukraine has continued, one of the bravest shows of support for Ukraine came from Marina Ovsyannikova, a Russian journalist, who interrupted a newscast to hold up a sign protesting the war on Monday March 14. She could be heard shouting in Russian in the background of the Channel One broadcast. Marina, who is an editor for the channel, quickly garnered worldwide support for speaking out against the Russian government, with many praising her for putting herself at risk to speak out against the attacks. Find out everything you need to know about Marina here.

1. What did Marina’s sign say?

While Marina’s message was in Russian, it was a simple and easy-to-understand message against the war. The sign had the words “No War” printed across the top, and at the bottom it said, “Russians Against War” at the bottom in English. She shouted the same message in Russian: “Stop the War. No to War,” before it cut away. The Russian text denounced the country’s government for sharing disinformation to garner support. “Don’t believe the propaganda. They’re lying to you here,” the sign said in Russian, per The Guardian

Before her protest on the network, she recorded a video message (shared on Twitter), which was released by the Russian human rights organization OVD-Info, to further speak out against Russia. “What’s happening in Ukraine right now is a true crime. And Russia is the aggressor. And the responsibility for this crime lies only on the conscience of one person, and that person is [Russian President] Vladimir Putin,” the journalist said, before calling on Russians to further protest. “Unfortunately, in recent years I have been working on Channel One, creating Kremlin propaganda and I am now very ashamed of it. I’m embarrassed for letting them tell lies from the TV screen. I’m ashamed that I allowed them to zombify Russian people.”

2. Zelenskyy thanked her for speaking out.

Included in those who supported Marina, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy showed his gratitude for her and other Russians who have protested the government. “I am grateful to those Russians who do not stop trying to convey the truth. To those who fight disinformation and tell the truth, real facts to their friends and loved ones,” he said in a video address, via Reuters“And personally to the woman who entered the studio of Channel One with a poster against the war.”

Marina held up a sign calling for Russia to stop the war against Ukraine on TV. (DSK/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)

3. Marina was arrested for the on-air protest.

Shortly after she burst into frame to speak out against the war, Marina was unable to be found, but she was detained shortly after she was found, according to OVD-Info. She was taken to trial and found guilty for “organizing an uncoordinated rally,” and she was fined 30,000 rubles.

4. She’s garnered support from leaders across the globe.

For her bravery, many leaders from around the world have spoken out in support of her. French President Emmanuel Macron offered her asylum in France via Newsweek. Former presidential candidate and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders also tweeted his support and echoed her message in a tweet. “This is an act of incredible courage,” he wrote.

5. Her husband also works for a Russian news agency.

In light of Marina’s protest, many outlets attempted to get in touch with her husband Igor Ovsyannikov, whom she has two children with. Igor is a director for the news organization Russia Today (RT), via 93 RUSince her protest, Igor has told reporters that he didn’t know anything about her protest or her whereabouts, and the pair are allegedly recently separated, according to Newizv

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