Russian censors block YouTube videos and Ukrainian news website because of journalist's interview

15:03, 23 march 2016

Russia's state censor, Roskomnadzor, has blocked two YouTube clips containing fragments from an interview with journalist Yevgeny Kiselyov, where he criticized Ukrainian officials for responding too passively to Russia's murder trial against Ukrainian war prisoner Nadiya Savchenko. 

In the interview, Kiselyov suggested that officials “anywhere in southeastern Ukraine” should respond by arresting “some of the Russians” in the area. As an example, he mentioned Alexander Alexandrov and Evgeny Evrofeev, two Russian citizens who are currently in jail in Ukraine facing terrorism charges, after being captured last year in the Luhansk conflict zone. Officials in Kiev insist that Alexandrov and Evrofeev are Russian military intelligence agents, though Moscow denies this claim. According to Kiselyov, there are many other Russian agents operating in Ukraine.

In addition to the YouTube videos, Russian censors also blocked the Ukrainian news channel Ukrlife, which is the station that interviewed Kiselyov. Refusing to remove the interview, Ukrlife instead published a message addressed to its audience in Russia, warning that its content will be unavailable to them, due to Russian censors.

This isn't the first time Roskomnadzor has had issues with Ukrlife. Censors recently blocked more than a dozen of the channel's videos on YouTube containing fragments from an interview with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's former chief of staff, Andriy Senchenko, where he called Russia's presence in Crimea an “occupation” and advocated various measures to return the peninsula to Ukrainian sovereignty.