Russia Bans ABC TV!
** After the “Nightline” interview with Chechen Terrorist Basayev,
Russia Bans ABC-TV! **
Also today, a Russian woman becomes the 331st fatality of the Beslan school hostage crisis (photo above from the school siege aftermath). Shamil Basayev, interviewed for “Nightline”, has taken responsibility for this attack on school children.
The Russian Foreign Ministry is restricting ABC-TV’s operations in Russia, after the U.S. network broadcast an interview with a Chechen rebel leader.
In a statement released Tuesday, the ministry announced it would not renew accreditations for ABC’s reporters and that the network is now “unwelcome” to interview Russian officials.
The ministry is the governmental body that authorizes foreign media to work in Russia. Its refusal to accredit an outlet effectively bars that company from working in the country.
The move is a reaction to last week’s Nightline interview with Shamil Basayev, who has been linked to the 2004 school seizure and hostage-taking in Beslan. Russian authorities have also said that Basayev – who has a $10-million US bounty on his head and is considered the country’s most-wanted man – is linked to the 2002 Moscow theatre hostage-taking and other bombings in recent years.
This picture taken from securitiy cameras shows Chechen warlord Shamil Basayev inside what he said was an Interior Ministry weapons warehouse in Ingushetia on the night of June 22, 2004 when guerrilla attacks in the North Caucasus republic killed as many as 90 people.
The ministry statement accuses the ABC interview of “supporting the propaganda of terrorism” and states that the footage “resounded with direct calls for violence against Russian citizens.”
In the interview, Basayev says he is plotting more attacks if the fighting in Chechnya continues. Chechen rebels have been fighting for independence from Moscow for a decade.
“Nightline” Still has reference to this terrorist supporting propaganda piece HERE