GENERICO.ruRussiaKhakassian journalist Mikhail Afanasyev was sentenced to 5.5 years in prison because of an article about Russian guardsmen who...

Khakassian journalist Mikhail Afanasyev was sentenced to 5.5 years in prison because of an article about Russian guardsmen who refused to fight

The Abakan City Court sentenced Mikhail Afanasyev, editor-in-chief of the Khakassian magazine Novy Focus, to 5.5 years of general regime in the case of “fakes” about the Russian army. This is reported by Kommersant with reference to the prosecutor's office of Khakassia and the chairman of the Yabloko party, Nikolai Rybakov, who attended the hearings on the journalist's case.

Prosecutor Yuri Yarosh asked the journalist for six years in prison.

Judge Yevgeny Glushchakov also banned the journalist from publishing materials in the media and the Internet for 2.5 years after his release – the prosecution asked for a three-year ban.

A criminal case on the dissemination of “fakes” about the Russian military (point “a” of part 2 of Article 207.3 of the Criminal Code) against Afanasyev was initiated in April 2022. Since then, the journalist has been in jail.

The reason was an article by Novy Focus about 11 Russian Guard soldiers who were fired for refusing to fight in Ukraine. In the material, Afanasiev, referring to the stories of the special forces, wrote that the OMON fighters refused to obey the order and cross the border with Ukraine after the column of their colleagues was defeated near Kiev on the very first day of the Russian invasion, and the leadership tried to hush up what had happened.

The information about the dismissal was later confirmed by security officials questioned in court, and after the publication of the New Focus material, at least nine National Guardsmen filed lawsuits with the Supreme Court of Khakassia, demanding reinstatement.

1Article“I don't want to live like a bitch.” The case of a Khakassian journalist who was asked for 6 years in the case of “fakes” for an article about riot policemen who refused to fight

Afanasyev's defense insisted that the journalist should not have been charged under the article about “fake” about the Russian army, since he wrote not about the military, but about the National Guard.

The law that extended Article 207.2 of the Criminal Code to employees of the National Guard was signed by Vladimir Putin on March 26 last year, but they entered into force only ten days later, that is, on April 5 , the day after Afanasyev's publication, the lawyers noted.

The journalist himself, speaking with the last word, said that he was trying to help ordinary soldiers of the Khakass OMON who did not want to die in the war and draw attention to problems in the department.


“By persecuting me for my word in defense of my neighbor in my articles, it is as if they are trying to accustom me to the fact that the manifestation of arbitrariness, tyranny, lawlessness, indifference, and sometimes murderous stupidity of various kinds of officials is not my business. No, this is my business, ”Novaya Gazeta Europe quoted Afanasyev as saying.


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