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Russian State Channel Apologizes for Passing Belarussian as a Ukrainian Opponent of Maidan

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Russia’s Channel One has apologized for airing a fake interview with a man who claimed be a Ukrainian participant of the 2014 Maidan revolution, a day after a blogger identified the man as a Belarussian with no ties to the protest movement.

Late last month, the state-run television channel aired a program dedicated to the five year anniversary of the Maidan Revolution in Ukraine. The program cited a man who said he had participated in the events and was now disappointed with the new Ukrainian government that the revolution had brought to power. But on Thursday, the man was outed by a prominent Russian blogger as a Belarussian national with no apparent ties to the revolution.

Channel One’s press service apologized for the mistake on Friday in a statement carried by the state-run TASS news agency

The channel said that a group of stringers it had hired to film the segment had replaced the interview with the Maidan participant with a substitute due to the poor quality of the original footage.

The substitute interview reportedly featured the stringers’ friend who had recreated the interview answers given by the Ukrainian national.

The channel said they regretted the incident and promised to publish the original interview once they got hold of it.

Russian state-run media have previously come under fire for airing fake news reports. In 2016, a French television show exposed a Russian news report about Eurosceptics in France as having used falsifications and misquotes.

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