WATCH: Far Right Politicians Beat Up Ukraine TV Chief – A Worrying Sign For New Ukraine

WATCH: Far Right Politicians Beat Up Ukraine TV Chief – A Worrying Sign For New Ukraine

The increasingly hostile situation between Russia and Ukraine has claimed its latest victim, the CEO of Ukraine's national media service. A violent video surfaced earlier this week, revealing several thugs harassing and throwing around Aleksandr Panteleymonov, the acting CEO of Ukraine's National Television Company. The perpetrators? A Ukrainian member of parliament and a far-right Svoboda party ideologist. 

Shoving, name-calling and taunting Panteleymonov, the politicians forced the media CEO to sign a letter of resignation. Continuing their belligerence, they then posted a video of the incident online. 

     

RT News identified the men as member of parliament Igor Miroshnychenko and Svoboda party ideologist Andrey Ilyenko. Apparently the vehemently pro-Ukrainian men were not happy with the media outlet's recent coverage of Russia. The men were allegedly infuriated by the public broadcasting of Russian President Vladimir Putin and pro-Russian Crimean leaders signing the treaty of annexation. In response they attacked the channel's CEO, shouting expletives at him and making him sign a penned resignation letter.


Image Credit: RT News via NY Daily News

Miroshnychenko said that he did not regret the attack. According to the politician, Panteleymonov had "served Putin and Russian propaganda … at a time when Ukrainians were dying on the streets."

Press freedom experts warn that a failure to investigate and prosecute the incident could set a dangerous precedent for all journalists and media services in Ukraine. 

Ukraine's prime minister called the attack "unacceptable for a democratic society."

As Ukraine's new pro-Western government faces challenges to redefine itself amid Russian and Western pull, it also faces a very public test on how it will handle this recent assault on press freedom.

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Marguerite Ward

Marguerite Ward is a journalist and editor based in New York. Connect with her @forwardist.

MORE FROM

Top Pope aide charged with sexual assault vows to fight his "relentless character assassination"

Pell is the highest-ranking Catholic Church official to be ensnared in the church's sexual abuse scandal.

'Hot Mic' podcast: Sterling family lawsuit, Low approval for GOP health care, Trump hotel sued

The important stories to get you caught up for Thursday.

CNN's Van Jones allegedly says the Trump Russia stories are "a big nothing burger"

He's the second CNN insider this week to apparently denounce the network's Russia coverage.

Conservative columnist Bret Stephens joins MSNBC

Stephens will remain a columnist at The New York Times.

Department of Homeland Security announces new airline security rules

The new measures could help end the electronics ban.

Democrats on Neil Gorsuch's first Supreme Court term: "We've got another Scalia"

Some say Gorsuch's even-handed performance during his confirmation hearings "might be more an act than it was a real persona."

Top Pope aide charged with sexual assault vows to fight his "relentless character assassination"

Pell is the highest-ranking Catholic Church official to be ensnared in the church's sexual abuse scandal.

'Hot Mic' podcast: Sterling family lawsuit, Low approval for GOP health care, Trump hotel sued

The important stories to get you caught up for Thursday.

CNN's Van Jones allegedly says the Trump Russia stories are "a big nothing burger"

He's the second CNN insider this week to apparently denounce the network's Russia coverage.

Conservative columnist Bret Stephens joins MSNBC

Stephens will remain a columnist at The New York Times.

Department of Homeland Security announces new airline security rules

The new measures could help end the electronics ban.

Democrats on Neil Gorsuch's first Supreme Court term: "We've got another Scalia"

Some say Gorsuch's even-handed performance during his confirmation hearings "might be more an act than it was a real persona."