German journalist faces three years prison over reporting from eastern Ukraine

By Steve Sweeney

GERMAN journalist Alina Lipp has said she faces three years in prison in her home country for her reporting from Ukraine’s eastern Donbass region.

The charges against her relate to coverage from her News from Russia Telegram channel where she shares information with its 175,000 subscribers in both German and Russian.

In an interview with the Readonka World website, she explained that she is subject to criminal proceedings by the German federal government after receiving a letter from the prosecutor’s office.

She is accused by the German authorities of supporting the Russian invasion of Ukraine and faces three years in prison under article 140 of the constitution or a monetary fine.

“The letter says that, for example, I say in my Telegram channel that the population of Donbass supports the fact that Russia has launched a special operation.

“I also said that for several years Ukrainians have been killing civilians in the Donbass, and that this is genocide.

“And it turns out to be a crime for Germany, so they took 1,600 euro from my bank account and didn’t even tell me about it,” Ms Lipp said.

German authorities also closed down her father’s bank account without warning, she claimed.

Ms Lipp is a former Green Party politician who has been based in Ukraine’s eastern Donbass region for six months.

She says she just films what she sees and doesn’t spread “fake information.”

Despite the charges against her, she plans to continue reporting from Donetsk, which she said is being shelled daily by the Ukrainian armed forces.

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Reporting in Ukraine is tightly restricted and those who deviate from the Kiev line do so at serious risk to their safety.

Canadian journalist Eva Bartlett, who has also been reporting from the Donbass region, says she has been placed on a government kill list.

In 2014 Italian photojournalist Andrea Rocchelli was shot dead by Ukrainian soldiers in the east of the country.

His photograph was later found in the offices of the Myrotvorets Centre with the word “liquidated” written over it.

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