The news agency published images showing the launch of an interceptor missile from a residential area
News agency Reuters should be investigated in Ukraine for publishing photos showing anti-aircraft action over Kiev, air force spokesman Yury Ignat has suggested.
Photos published by the agency on Sunday appeared to show Ukrainian anti-aircraft forces engaging targets in the capital. One image showed an explosion in the night sky and the trace of a missile coming from a residential area. The series was shot by Reuters photographer Gleb Garanich, who is based in Kiev.
“I have not had the opportunity to study [the images], but in the end, the people whose job is dealing with such things, shall deal with them,” Ignat was quoted by the Strana.ua news outlet as saying on Sunday. Ignat’s military branch is responsible for air defense.
In the early weeks of the conflict with Russia, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky imposed a strict ban on publishing certain images related to the hostilities, including those of air defense interceptions and targeted locations. Violators can face up to 12 years in prison under Ukrainian law.
In late May, Ukraine’s SBU security service reported charging four female “bloggers” for sharing online images of anti-aircraft action over Kiev. They pleaded guilty and were sentenced in August to suspended five-year sentences.
In June, the SBU said it had targeted over 200 people for violating the ban, with 190 cases proceeding to trial. It claimed that most of those prosecuted had intended to undermine Ukraine’s war effort by sharing images with the Russian military.
The Defense Ministry in Moscow has yet to comment on Ukrainian claims that Russian drones were shot down over Kiev at the weekend. Moscow previously reported the launch of attacks on military targets in the Ukrainian capital.
Russia has frequently warned that the Ukrainian military is endangering civilians by placing anti-aircraft launchers in residential areas. Ignat has claimed that the air force was forced to deploy assets inside cities as it did not have enough weapon systems to protect them.
September 11, 2023 at 02:12PM