Marina Ovsyannikova: Russian journalist who staged anti-war TV protest escapes house arrest

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By Euronews
Marina Ovsyannikova has twice been convicted for spreading "fake news" about Russia's armed forces.
Marina Ovsyannikova has twice been convicted for spreading "fake news" about Russia's armed forces.   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko

A former Russian state journalist who staged an anti-war protest live on television has escaped house arrest.

Marina Ovsyannikova confirmed on Wednesday that she is no longer abiding by pre-trial arrest rules and had fled with her young daughter.

The 44-year-old has been placed on Moscow's wanted list after her ex-husband reported she had escaped.

"I refuse to abide by the restrictions imposed on me," she wrote on Facebook on Wednesday, adding "I consider myself completely innocent."

Ovsyannikova was fined after appearing on Russia's Channel One in March with a placard that said "Stop the war" and "They're lying to you".

She was also charged for protesting outside the Kremlin with a sign reading "Putin is a killer, his soldiers are fascists, 352 children have been killed [in Ukraine]".

Russian citizens face up to 15 years in prison if found guilty of intentionally sharing so-called "fake news" about Russia's army or its entities abroad.

Ovsyannikova had been placed under house arrest for two months until October 9, pending trial at a Moscow district court.

She had quit as an editor for Russia One after her TV protest and moved abroad to work for the German newspaper "Welt" but returned to Russia in July to resolve a custody battle for her children.

Additional sources • AP, Reuters