RealNews

Russia sacks top TV journalist after Chechnya interview

Leonid Parfyonov, a leading Russian television journalist, has never been the kind of reporter to be cowed by his government’s manhandling of the media. In 2002, he rankled the Kremlin when he hired a lip reader to decipher what Russian President Vladimir Putin was telling an official on soundless videotape after a Chechen rebel takeover of a Moscow theater. Last year, he planned a segment on a Kremlin reporter’s tell-all book that painted an unflattering portrait of Putin. NTV, the state-controlled network he worked for, squelched the report. Parfyonov’s recent decision to air an interview with the widow of a Chechen separatist leader against the wishes of Russia’s intelligence community appeared to be the last straw. NTV said this week that it had fired Parfyonov and shut down his top-rated newsmagazine program, Namedni. Full Story

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