The deputy speaker of the State Duma, Igor Lebedev, announced on Friday that his party, LDPR, wants journalists at the independent TV station Dozhd stripped of their accreditation for reporting anonymous allegations that that LDPR deputy Leonid Slutsky sexually harassed two journalists working at the State Duma. Lebedev claims that the accusations against his colleague are “a violation of ethics and criminal law, and an insult.” He did not name the specific reporters he wants punished.
Slutsky has denied the allegations, and LDPR leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky said on Thursday that he considers such behavior inadmissible and promised to look into the matter. Zhirinovsky is no stranger to treating women like garbage, however. In early 2014, he infamously ordered an aide to rape a pregnant journalist and then called the women who rushed to her defense “a bunch of lesbians.” BuzzFeed’s Miriam Elder broke down that sad episode right here.
One journalist told Dozhd that he made a pass at her when she came to his office to interview him about international affairs in 2017. Another reporter says she didn’t report his harassment because she feared losing her accreditation to work in the State Duma. After the report aired, one of Dozhd’s producers contacted Meduza and revealed that Slutsky only agreed to appear on the channel if she agreed to have dinner with him. When he did come in for a segment, he tried to kiss her on the lips and grab her buttocks, she says.