Babaeva works in a major media group supported by the Kremlin, Rossiya Segodnya. He served as bureau chief in the city of Simferopol, the second-largest city on the Crimean peninsula that Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014.
RIA NovostiRussian news agencies and subsidiaries Rossiya Segodnyareported that Babaeva was killed by a stray bullet during shooting practice at the military training ground.
There were no further details of the journalist’s murder. Professional figuresKremlin paid tribute to Babayeva in a social media post.
Sergei Aksyonov, governor Crimea Russia called his death an irrevocable loss.
“Svetlana has done a lot to tell the public the truth about what is happening in the Kherson region,” said Vladimir Balance, head of Ukraine’s Russia-backed Kherson region.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova wrote on her Telegram page: “I love you very much, Sveta.”
Ukraine has sanctioned media groups Rossiya Segodnya with cites its CEO, Dmitry Kiselyov, as a central figure in government propaganda supporting the deployment of Russian troops in Ukraine.
In a press release issued by RIA NovostiKiselyov said Babaeva is a warm person, who strongly supports Russia and wants to support Russian heroes on the battlefield.
Babaeva was previously head of the office RIA Novosti in the UK and the USA, as well as the editor of the gazeta.ru website. Gazeta.ru pays tribute to their former editor, whom they describe as the highest quality professional.
Russia continued its crackdown on independent journalists on Friday, saying Natalya Sindeyeva, director of the TV channel Dojd, as a foreign agent together with other journalists, namely Vladimir Romensky and Ekaterina Kotrikadze. Their names appear on the latest list of foreign agents of the Russian Ministry of Justice because of their political activities.
Launched in 2008, Dojd covering Russian opposition and protest movements. Last year, the chain was also labeled as a foreign agent.
All major independent media in Russia including radio stations Echo of Moscow and Dojdclosed or ceased operations in that country.
Dojd ended its operations in Russia and suspended broadcasts from Russia with an emotional broadcast on March 3, less than two weeks after Moscow invaded Ukraine. The channel resumed broadcasting on July 18 from a studio in neighboring Latvia.
Since the beginning of the war in UkraineRussia has enacted a law that provides prison sentences of up to 15 years for spreading information about the military that authorities deem false, such as calling for the invasion of war Ukraine, while the Kremlin ordered it to be labeled a special military operation.
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