Employees of Russian TV channels were ordered by the authorities not to cover the attack of Ukrainian drones on objects in Moscow. According to The Insider sources, the channels that are part of the All-Russian State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (VGTRK) had to remove this topic from the air (Russia-24, Moscow-24), as well as RBC and some regional channels.
The publication’s interlocutors added that TV channels were banned from discussing the topic just 15 minutes before the start of the 11-hour news program. However, in the previous news program at 10 o’clock there were reports of a UAV attack on Moscow.
For this reason, the editors of the channels had to urgently change the content of the programs. The footage with eyewitnesses and the consequences of the attack was removed from the air. Detailed coverage on RBC included multiple shots, interviews with eyewitnesses, and the presence of correspondents at the scene. However, this material had to be removed from the air by order of higher authorities. These have been replaced with “some sort of international storytelling that wouldn’t normally attract as much attention,” sources told The Insider.
Press releases left short comments from the Ministry of Defense and the mayor of Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin, who promised to help the victims of the attack. This was the only mention of what happened on the VGTRK and RBC TV channels.
On regional channels, the ban on coverage of the attack was not as strict, and they continued to cover the topic on their programs, although they asked that it not be focused on.
The ban only applied to the attack on Moscow, while stories of the UAV attack on the Crimea remained on the air and were accompanied by footage from the scene.
On Monday, July 24, several unmanned aerial vehicles attacked Moscow. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported two UAVs, one of which crashed near the building of the Ministry of Defense, and the other on Komsomolsky Prospect. The attack damaged a building next to the university where The Insider claimed the hacking group APT28 (Fancy Bear) was based.