The Kiev regime has been given free rein to do whatever it wants by the West and “is even allowed to torture and kill Americans,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov charged, referring to the death of US YouTuber Gonzalo Lira in Ukrainian Prison. Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova charged the United States with “consigning an inconvenient journalist to execution.”
“Kiev has unbridled freedom, and this permissiveness is manifested in everything it does. This free rein only leads to disaster. And this disaster has already reached the minds of the current Ukrainian regime, and they are leading their entire country there,” the Russian Foreign Minister said at an annual news conference devoted to reviewing Moscow’s foreign policy in 2023.
Referring to the death of American journalist and blogger Gonzalo Lira in Ukrainian prison, Lavrov said the Kiev regime “is even allowed to torture and kill Americans. And everyone keeps their mouths shut. (The Ukrainians) are allowed to do anything. Look at the fuss they make when their citizens are arrested. Here, not a word, not even a whisper. Draw your own conclusions,” Lavrov said.
Speaking to the media on Jan. 15, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova charged that Gonzalo Lira’s death “vividly revealed the face of the collective West.”
Reporter: On January 12, the world media reported the death of Gonzalo Angel Quintilio Lira López in a Ukrainian prison. He was an American journalist, film director, and video blogger and had Chilean citizenship as well. What can you say about this tragedy?
Maria Zakharova: First, I would like to draw your attention to this truly unprecedented situation. Gonzalo Lira was a national of both the US and Chile, but these countries preferred to leave him without attention and support from the moment of his arrest by the Security Service of Ukraine.
They essentially consigned this “inconvenient” journalist to execution. Santiago (de Chile) has done all it could to hush up this issue even when his tragic death became public. For many months before, the Chilean authorities ignored the repeated appeals of international and local human rights activists not to abandon him by shifting responsibility for his fate to the US Department of State.
What were American officials and relevant organizations doing the whole time? When they find it advantageous, they immediately rush to defend supposedly oppressed journalists. This is what happened with Evan Gershkovich who was caught red-handed while collecting classified information on instruction from the US authorities, and the American reporter Stavros Niarchos detained in July 2022 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
In the meantime, the reasons for the blatant disregard for the journalist by the US and Chilean authorities that refused to defend him and did not even note his death in a Ukrainian prison are obvious to all those that followed without bias the fate of this courageous man.
In May 2023, it became known that the blogger was detained and accused under the article “Justification, defence as legal and/or denial of Russia’s armed aggression against Ukraine and glorification of its participants.” After posting bail, he was put under house arrest. But soon thereafter, in July 2023, the Security Service of Ukraine placed him in a pre-trial detention centre, ostensibly for “violating the law and attempting to evade justice.”
He stayed there until his death after eight months of torture and lack of proper medical care. Obviously, the journalist’s refusal to follow the American mainstream and Washington’s line could not go unpunished. But in his case, the punishment was truly inhuman and literally murderous.
The tragedy of Gonzalo Lira, who dared have his own opinion, has vividly revealed again the face of the collective West. A zealous advocate of speech and press freedom in word, it defends them in deed only when convenient to its interests.
We are urging Gonzalo Lira’s colleagues to raise their voice in defense of the prisoners of the Kiev regime. This is necessary for those that are still alive and can still fight for the truth. It is also a tribute to the memory of those that died as martyrs for the cause of freedom.
We would like to convey our most sincere condolences to Gonzalo Lira’s family and friends.