Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Media accused of pro-protester bias in Ferguson

Read more

DEBATE

The Murderous Lure of Jihad: Tackiling ISIS and its Worldwide Recruitment (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

The Murderous Lure of Jihad: Tackiling ISIS and its Worldwide Recruitment

Read more

FOCUS

Republicans block Obama's bid to hike minimum wage

Read more

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users divided over Darren Wilson

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users take on 'Ice Bucket Challenge' to fight ALS

Read more

ENCORE!

From Paris's Liberation to 'arresting' art in Avignon

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Ferguson riots: Pressure mounts on Obama

Read more

  • US says Islamic State threat 'beyond anything we've seen'

    Read more

  • Two US Ebola patients leave hospital ‘virus-free’

    Read more

  • Hollande is ‘nobody’s president’ says former French minister

    Read more

  • Turkey’s Erdogan names foreign minister Davutoglu as next PM

    Read more

  • US reaches historic $16.7bn settlement with Bank of America

    Read more

  • Special report: Supplying Ukraine’s soldiers on the front line

    Read more

  • US forces tried to rescue slain reporter from IS captors

    Read more

  • Israeli air strike kills three top Hamas commanders

    Read more

  • France delivered arms to Syrian rebels, Hollande confirms

    Read more

  • Tensions high in Yemen as Shiite rebel deadline looms

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

  • French village rallies behind besieged elderly British couple

    Read more

  • Former Irish PM Albert Reynolds dies at 81

    Read more

  • Former Femen activist detained after fighting veiled woman

    Read more

  • Thailand coup leader Prayuth Chan-ocha voted prime minister

    Read more

  • Brazil’s Silva launches bid after Campos plane crash death

    Read more

  • Brutal IS beheading video sparks social media pushback

    Read more

Europe

Kremlin-funded news anchor speaks out against Russia

© Picture from Russia Today video

Text by Thomas HUBERT

Latest update : 2014-03-04

Abby Martin, an American presenter on the English-language Russia Today news channel, went spectacularly off message on Monday night when she criticised Russian intervention in Ukraine live on her show.

Martin ended her show 'Breaking the Set', which she anchors from Washington for an American audience, with a diatribe against “Russia’s military occupation of Crimea”.

“Just because I work here for RT doesn’t mean I don’t have editorial independence and I can’t stress enough how strongly I am against state’s intervention in a nation’s sovereign affairs. What Russia did was wrong,” she said.

Her bold statement contrasted with Russia Today’s coverage of the Ukrainian crisis so far. The Russian government-funded channel has broadly reflected Moscow’s position, describing the interim head of state elected by the Ukrainian parliament as “the self-imposed president of Ukraine, Aleksandr Turchinov”, and the militias that took control of strategic sites in Crimea with Russian military backing as “the Crimean popular army made up of locals and former Ukrainian armed forces brac[ing] for possible impact with right-wing radicals”.

A YouTube clip of Martin’s monologue attracted more than 300,000 viewers in less than 15 hours, as well as largely positive comments.

“First truthful comment in this whole mess. Very brave. Great job,” wrote Lukas Vogl.

Martin also received support on Twitter and on her Facebook page, where Tomasz Groń wrote from Poland: “The world needs people like you!”

Yet Martin's position also drew criticism from supporters of Russia’s intervention. “You are sooo brave… That you support indirectly the new Nazis in Ukraine,” wrote Fidel Faria on her Facebook page. Like other web users, he suggested that she moves to the conservative US channel Fox News.

Many others, such as Brandon Wright, expressed amazement at Martin’s departure from the official Russian line asking: “Will she be at work today?”

According to the "Huffington Post", she will. “We respect her views, and the views of all our journalists, presenters and program hosts, and there will be absolutely no reprimands made against Ms. Martin,” the website quotes Russia Today as saying.

“In her comment Ms. Martin also noted that she does not possess a deep knowledge of (the) reality of the situation in Crimea. As such we’ll be sending her to Crimea to give her an opportunity to make up her own mind from the epicentre of the story,” Russia Today’s response to the incident was further quoted as saying.

Date created : 2014-03-04

  • UKRAINE

    Are the US and the UK bound to intervene in Ukraine?

    Read more

  • UKRAINE - RUSSIA

    Obama seeks to 'further isolate' Russia over Ukraine

    Read more

  • UKRAINE - DIPLOMACY

    How Putin called the West’s bluff on Ukraine

    Read more

COMMENT(S)