Dmitry Konstantinovich Kiselyov

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Dmitry Kiselyov in 2008

Dmitry Konstantinovich Kiselyov (Russian: Дми́трий Константи́нович Киселёв, born 26 April 1954)[1] is a controversial, right-wing Russian journalist who has attracted attention in the West for his comments on homosexuals and Jews. In December 2013 he was appointed by Russian President Vladimir Putin head of the new official Russian government owned international news agency Rossiya Segodnya, a 2,300 person organization made up largely of the former RIA Novosti news agency and the shortwave radio station Voice of Russia. He also serves as deputy director of Russian state TV holding company VGTRK.[2]

Career[edit]

He is best known as presenter of Vesti nedeli (News of the Week),[2] a weekly news programme on the domestic Rossiya 1 television network. He allegedly uses the show as a soapbox to promote the Kremlin's policies and denigrate the West[2].

He has attracted attention due to his controversial comments, such as "maligning homosexuality and speculating about Western-led conspiracies" on his programme as well as using it to attack the political opposition to Putin.[3] In one televised commentary, he said "[Gays] should be prohibited from donating blood, sperm,... And their hearts, in case they die in a car accident, should be buried or burned as unfit for extending anyone's life,"[2] suggesting that the internal organs of homosexuals should be burned and buried rather than be accepted for organ transplants.[3]

In Sweden, he became controversial in December 2013 when he criticized the moral values of that country in response to the 2013 Ukrainian protests, for which he partly blamed the Swedish political leadership and Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt[4] as well as the government of Poland, accusing Poland and Sweden of fomenting the protests to avenge defeats in centuries-old Polish-Russian and Russo-Swedish Wars.[3]

He has also been criticised by the Russian Jewish Congress (RJC) for comments on 16 February 2014 when he attacked two Russian writers, Viktor Shenderovich and Igor Irtenyev, who had both compared the Sochi Winter Olympics to the Summer Olympics in Berlin in 1936. Irtenyev claimed that the only major difference between the two was that Nazi Germany had a higher standard of living. Kiseljov responded by informing his audience that Irtenyev's real name was Igor Moiseyevich Rabinovich, a clearly Jewish name, and pointed out that under Hitler Shenderovich and Irtenyev would have both been persecuted and died. The RJC complained about what Kiseljov had said and stated that it was "unacceptable when the ethnicity of an opponent is used as an argument in debate, or as additional grounds for criticising him".[5]

The Moscow Times has considered him as ″the Kremlin's New Chief Propagandist″ .[6]

Personal life[edit]

Kiselyov is married to Maria and they have four children, two in common and two from their previous marriages. He studied philology at Leningrad State University and speaks English, French, Norwegian and Swedish.[7]

Crimea[edit]

On 16 March 2014, the day of Crimean referendum, Kiselyov stated in the News of the Week broadcast that Russia is "the only country in the world capable of turning the U.S.A. into radioactive dust."[8]

On 20 March 2014, EU unveiled a list of Russians to be sanctioned over 2014 Crimean crisis. Kiselyov was included into sanctions list.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ведущим программы "Вести недели" на "России 1" станет Дмитрий Киселев" (in Russian). Russia-1. Retrieved 14 December 2013. "Дмитрий Киселев родился 26 апреля 1954 года" 
  2. ^ a b c d Daisy Sindelar (December 15, 2013). "In Choosing Kiselyov, Media Critics Say Putin Opts For Personal Propagandist". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Archived from the original on December 12, 2013. Retrieved December 10, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c "Russia state news agency gets controversial chief". World Post. December 9, 2013. Retrieved March 11, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Svenskt barnprogram slagträ i rysk stats-tv" (in Swedish). Aftonbladet. Archived from the original on March 17, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Russian Jews fear anti-Semitism amid Crimea fervour". BBC. Retrieved 5 April 2014. 
  6. ^ "The Kremlin's New Chief Propagandist". The Moscow Times. December 11, 2013. Archived from the original on March 13, 2014. Retrieved February 21, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Дмитрий Киселев: «В загс я Машу повез на мотоцикле»" (in Russian). Archived from the original on November 7, 2010. 
  8. ^ Russia could turn U.S. ‘into radioactive dust,’ influential Moscow news anchor tells viewers, National Post and Associated Press, March 17, 2014.
  9. ^ [1]