Dmitry Konstantinovich Kiselyov

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Not to be confused with Yevgeny Kiselyov.
Dmitry Kiselyov in 2008

Dmitry Konstantinovich Kiselyov (Russian: Дми́трий Константи́нович Киселёв, born 26 April 1954)[1] is a Russian journalist. 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]

Many of his comments have been controversial and have been labelled right-wing; he has gained particular notoriety in the west for his commentary on homosexuals[2] and his statement made during the 2014 Crimean crisis, that Russia is "the only country in the world capable of turning the U.S.A. into radioactive dust."[3]

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. A show which he is accused of using as a soapbox to promote the Kremlin's policies,[2] malign homosexuality, denigrate the west and speculate about Western-led conspiracies as well as attack the political opposition to Putin.[4]

Controversy[edit]

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.[4]

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[5] 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.[4]

On 16 February 2014 he criticised two Jewish writers, Viktor Shenderovich and Igor Irtenyev, who had both compared the Sochi Winter Olympics to the Summer Olympics in Berlin in 1936 and claimed that the only major difference between the two was that Nazi Germany had a higher standard of living. Kiselyov ridiculed their comments and revealed to 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. He has been condemned by Jewish advocacy-groups for the above comments.

Ukraine[edit]

On May 15, Kiselyov said about the country, “There is no Ukraine. That is only a virtual concept, a virtual country. If you want to live in a virtual world, please do…But Ukraina.ru is a real portal. Not about the country, but about that territory which was under the rule of that country. Now it is a failed state.”[6]

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."[3]

On 20 March 2014, EU unveiled a list of Russians to be sanctioned over 2014 Crimean crisis. Kiselyov was included into sanctions list.[7]

Armenia[edit]

On June 13, 2014 he visited Armenia where he made some controversial comments regarding current Minister of the Foreign Affairs Nikol Pashinyan and his predecessor Alexander Arzumanyan for which he was booted out from Armenia.[8]

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.[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 e 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 "Russia could turn U.S. ‘into radioactive dust,’ influential Moscow news anchor tells viewers". Associated Press (National Post). March 17, 2014. Archived from the original on November 7, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b c "Russia state news agency gets controversial chief". World Post. December 9, 2013. Retrieved March 11, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Svenskt barnprogram slagträ i rysk stats-tv" (in Swedish). Aftonbladet. Archived from the original on March 17, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Дмитрий Киселев: "Теперь Украина – виртуальная страна, а наш портал настоящий!"" [Dmitry Kiselyov, "Now Ukraine - a virtual country, while our portal is real!"]. Slon.ru. May 15, 2014. Archived from the original on May 17, 2014. Retrieved May 17, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Dmitry Kiselyov: Russian TV presenter draws EU sanctions wrath". Financial Times. Archived from the original on March 22, 2014!". Retrieved March 22, 2014. 
  8. ^ Naira Hayrumyan (June 13, 2014). "Bull in a china shop?: Armenia reacts to controversial statements by pro-Kremlin media boss". ArmeniaNow. Archived from the original on June 22, 2014. Retrieved June 22, 2014!". 
  9. ^ "Дмитрий Киселев: "В загс я Машу повез на мотоцикле"" (in Russian). Archived from the original on November 7, 2010.