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"This is not journalism": Ukrainian Foreign Ministry reacts to ZDF's story about occupied Mariupol

Distorting reality is not journalism

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine has responded to the ZDF story from the temporarily occupied Mariupol. Spokesperson for the Ministry, Oleh Nikolenko, emphasized that this is not journalism.

Moreover, such a "trip" could affect the future work of the media in Ukraine. Nikolenko wrote about this on his Twitter account.

"Distorting reality is not journalism. In addition, ZDF, the visit of the head of the Moscow bureau to the occupied Mariupol without the consent of Ukraine is a violation of Ukrainian law," he said.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry called on ZDF to provide an official explanation for this situation.

"Violation of Ukrainian legislation may affect the further work of the media in Ukraine," the spokesman added.

As a reminder, Armin Körper, a journalist of the German public broadcaster ZDF, who heads the channel's Russian bureau, filmed a report from occupied Mariupol in the Donetsk region. In the story, he distorted the picture of Ukrainian life and the "normal functioning" of the city under the "rule" of the Russian invaders.

The journalist expressed his belief that the occupied "city needs people" to make the economy "work again". According to him, Mariupol "is functioning, there are shops and restaurants..., there is heating, hot water and the Internet".

He also stated that before the occupation, the drama theater bombed by Russian troops was "forbidden to hold perfomances in Russian" but "now the situation has changed".

The advisor to the mayor of Mariupol, Petro Andriushchenko, appealed to the National Security and Defense Council, the Security Service of Ukraine, and the State Border Guard Service, calling for a demonstrative response to such a case. Firstly, to impose personal sanctions on the journalist and bring him to justice for violating the border (since he did not enter Mariupol through the official border of Ukraine). Secondly, the official advises to open criminal proceedings for propaganda, with a verdict or a wanted list.

As previously reported, an exhibition and conference in Modena (Italy) was canceled due to the outrage of Ukrainians and Italians as Russian propagandists wanted to talk about the "prosperity" of Mariupol after its occupation by Russia there. However, this was not the only pro-Russian event in the country: The propagandist Dugin toured freely in Italy, and concerts by artists from the Russian aggressor country are often held there.

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