UK government sanctions Russian state media, ‘propagandists’

Russian general known as ‘butcher of Mariupol’ among targeted in new list of 14 sanctions.

UK government sanctions Russian state media, ‘propagandists’

In a new round of sanctions, the British government on Thursday targeted the Russian state media and “propagandists” in a bid to further punish the Kremlin over its war on Ukraine.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss announced a further 14 sanctions against Russian individuals involved in the spread of Kremlin propaganda as well as state-owned media organizations.

“Putin’s war on Ukraine is based on a torrent of lies. Britain has helped lead the world in exposing Kremlin disinformation, and this latest batch of sanctions hits the shameless propagandists who push out Putin’s fake news and narratives,” Truss said in a statement.

“We will keep on going with more sanctions to ramp up the pressure on Russia and ensure Putin loses in Ukraine. Nothing and no one is off the table,” Truss added.

The sanctions target Sergey Brilev, a famous TV anchor on the Russian state-owned media outlet Rossiya and a well-known Kremlin propagandist. Organizations TV-Novosti, the owner of the state-run Russian Today, and Rossiya Segodnaya, who control Sputnik, have also been sanctioned.

Other sanctioned propagandists include Aleksandr Zharov, the chief executive officer of Gazprom-Media; Alexey Nikolov, the managing director of RT; and Anton Anisimov, the head of Sputnik International Broadcasting.

Further to sanctioning Russian media platforms and propagandists, the UK government sanctioned prominent Russian Colonel General Mikhail Mizintsev. He has been dubbed “the butcher of Mariupol” and is the chief of the National Defense Command and Control Center.

Mizintsev has built an ominous reputation for his brutal and reprehensible military tactics that include the indiscriminate shelling of civilian centers in Aleppo during Russia’s military intervention in the Syrian civil war and now in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol which is under siege by Russian forces.

“Putin’s propaganda machine has been working overdrive to spread misinformation and distract from his barbaric actions in Ukraine,” British Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said.

“These sanctions will target those who are complicit in covering up the Russian state’s actions. We will not hesitate to act further against individuals and organisations attempting to deceive people about this misguided war,” Dorries added.

Earlier this month, the British official media regulator Ofcom revoked RT’s broadcast license in the UK. The revocation followed an investigation by the regulatory authority on RT’s impartiality in its coverage of the Russian war on Ukraine.