The director of the Russian news agency RIA Novosti Ukraine, Kyrylo Vyshynsky, has been arrested on charges of high treason in Kiev, according to the press center of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU).
‘Kyrylo Vyshynsky, the leader of propagandist anti-Ukrainian information portal ‘RIA Novosti Ukraine’ is announced as a suspect in the crime. He is detained under the Article 208 of Ukraine’s Criminal Procedure Code. The criminal case was initiated under the respective article of the Criminal Code (state treason),” reads the police statement.
Legal proceedings were instituted under paragraph 1 of Article 111 (high treason) of the Ukrainian Criminal Code.
According to SBU spokeswoman Olena Hitlianska, SBU employees and the prosecutor’s office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea have uncovered the illegal activities of a Russian-controlled media network. Law enforcement authorities accuse the media agency of working with the Russian government to wage a hybrid information war against Ukraine.
Moscow has called for the release of the Russian journalist, condemning Kiev authorities for what it said was a repressive policy against the media.
“Russia will do everything to ensure its citizen is freed, and to prevent other journalists finding themselves in similar situations, whether they are Russian citizens or work for Russian media” foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a press briefing.
Vyshynsky, who denies the allegations, has been transferred to the southern city of Kherson, where he is expected to appear in court of Thursday, said his lawyer Andriy Domansky.