Panel Discussion: Russian Independent Journalism Under Siege

Date and Time: April, 7th at 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM (EDT)

Independent journalists in Russia have long been targets of selectively implemented laws designed at curtailing free media. However, after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24th, journalists further were constricted with a new law on spreading “false information about Russia’s special military operation”, and subsequent banning of many independent outlets. Under the new restrictions, Russian independent journalism is under serious threat to survival. Can independent journalists still work in Russia? How can journalists and outlets adapt to the new government restrictions? How can the international community best support independent journalism in Russia?

To address these and other questions USAGM and IREX, are convening a panel of media experts:

  • Kiryl Sukhotski, RFE/RL Regional Director for Europe and Current Time TV. Prior to joining RFE/RL he had been the head of the regional Russia/CIS TV operation for Reuters and worked for the BBC in London and Moscow.
  • Maria Ordzhonikidze, sociologist and security specialist, Director of Justice for Journalists Foundation (UK). She has designed and managed numerous public awareness, advocacy, human rights, and crisis management campaigns.
  • Roman Badanin, Russian investigative journalist, founder and former editor in chief of the PROEKT media outlet, former digital platform editor in chief of the Forbes Russia, former editor in chief of the Dozhd TV channel and the RBK news agency.
  • Natella Boltianskaya, Russian journalist, poet and song writer, host on recently closed Echo of Moscow, former Scholar in Residence at the Library of Congress. 

Moderator: Inna Dubinsky, Development and Training Project Manager at USAGM, former senior editor and program host at the Voice of America Russian Service.