Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

U.S. Journalist Fined for Interviewing Russian Environmental Asylum Seekers

Alina Simone Screenshot Youtube

An American freelance journalist has been fined for interviewing Siberian residents who had asked for Canadian asylum this summer over the deteriorating environment in their region.

Alina Simone was sued by the mayor of the coal-mining town of Kiselyovsk after she was spotted filming residents who made headlines in June for asking Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for asylum. She was alleged to have interviewed the environmental asylum seekers while on a tourist visa.

The Kiselyovsk City Court found Simone guilty of violating rules of entry into Russia, a misdemeanor, on Wednesday.

Simone was fined 2,000 rubles ($30), the U.S.-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty news website reported. She is due to leave Russia on Monday, her original date of departure, the outlet added.

Simone was originally born in Soviet Kharkiv and moved to the U.S. with her parents after being blacklisted by the KGB.

She traveled to Siberia on a whim after seeing the Kemerovo region residents’ video appeal to Trudeau, she said in an interview with RFE/RL’s Siberian affiliate Wednesday. She was not on assignment for any news outlet while she was filming the residents, she said.

“I just wanted to see it with my own eyes, I wanted to understand what was happening,” Simone said.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more