Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Police Probe Pro-Kremlin TV Host’s Hitler-Praising Comments – Reports

Vladimir Solovyov's news show on the state-run Rossia 1 broadcaster is one of Russia's most-watched television programs. Screenshot Rossiya 1

Moscow police are inspecting prominent talk show host Vladimir Solovyov’s remarks calling Hitler a “very brave man,” the RBC news website reported Monday.

The Interior Ministry's northern Moscow department said it had asked the state-run media holding All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (VGTRK) for copies of Solovyov’s show that aired last month, RBC reported.

Solovyov, who is often described as a Kremlin propagandist, is heard in a live Feb. 15 broadcast calling Hitler “personally a very brave man” who “fought honorably in World War I.” 

He had been comparing Hitler to jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, whom he disparaged as a “codpiece Fuhrer.”

Responding to Communist lawmaker Valery Rashkin’s request to investigate Solovyov’s comments for glorification of Nazism, the police department said it will forward the copies to researchers and investigators “for a legal assessment and a decision based on Russian legislation.”

While the glorification of Nazism is a criminal offense in Russia punishable by a maximum prison sentence of five years, it is unclear whether the authorities will prosecute the popular pro-Kremlin media personality. 

Solovyov previously dismissed the accusations and clarified his comments, saying “Hitler’s personal courage was not an excuse for his actions.”

Latvia, a former Soviet satellite state and a current European Union member, banned Solovyov’s entry into the country shortly after the live broadcast.

Read more

We need your help now more than ever.

Independent media outlets and journalists in Russia are being increasingly targeted with “foreign agent” and “undesirable” labels, threatening the existence of the free press day by day.

Your donation to The Moscow Times directly supports the last independent English-language news source within Russia.