Brazil should send a clear signal of rejection to Moscow, says the Russian journalist

In Brazil, the group is scheduled to meet with members of the MPF (Public Federal Ministry) and STF Minister André Mendonça.

Cesar Feitosa
Brazil D.F

Brazil needs to send clear signals about its position on the war between Russia and Ukraine after more than a year of conflict, says Russian journalist Kirill Martynov, editor-in-chief of Novaia Gazeta Europe. The paper is the arm that was left of the machine after Moscow decided to attack the independent press in the context of the war. It was also where Dmitri Muratov, who won the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize, worked just over two months before the Russian invasion.

“This is the time when the international community, all democratic governments, like Brazil, which is the leader of South America, must send a clear message. [Vladimir] Putin: he will never have an alliance if he does not stop the war,” Martynov said in an interview this Monday (13).

For him, the political position of Russia’s isolation is more relevant than the application of trade sanctions, and therefore, the way of conveying the message of rejecting the war should be determined by the diplomacy of each country.

“[O Brasil] Not yet [deixou clara sua posição]. I think it’s time to discuss this point. President Lula took an important step when he accepted the invitation [Volodimir] Zelensky to speak. I think that after seeing it with his own eyes, he will understand that there are two sides to the conflict: the victim and the aggressor.”

Martynov’s position is shared by Pavel Andreev, a human rights activist and a member of the board of directors of the 2022 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate NGO.

“On the one hand, I understand the position [do Brasil] to strategically define its diplomacy, but after a year of war, we have not seen any decision from Brazil,” he said. “Everyone should say that this is unacceptable, it is terrible, and that the conflict should end as soon as possible. Only Putin can end the war once and for all. It is his decision.”


The two Russians are part of a delegation organized by the European Union that is making a series of trips to South American countries to discuss the war in Ukraine. Objectives include understanding how the process of re-democratization took place in South American countries after military regimes in order to share experiences.

In Brazil, the group is scheduled to meet with members of the MPF (Federal Public Ministry) and STF (Federal Supreme Court) Minister André Mendonça. Russian journalist Konstantin Egert conducted all the meetings. Like Martynov, Eggert left the country due to constant attacks on journalists and closure of newspapers since the beginning of Putin’s rule.

“The main enemy of autocrats is time. Eventually, people start to get tired, and that’s when Putin will suffer,” he says.

According to Russian visitors, unlike the Brazilian experience of fake news, the campaign in Russia is about expanding the use of social media. In the country, the population is prohibited from using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. NGOs, however, estimate that up to 5% of Russians use software to bypass Putin’s censorship and access the platforms.


“A decline in Instagram access was observed. at the beginning of last year, Instagram had about 30 million weekly logins. Now they have only 5 million, which is equivalent to 3% or 5% of the Russian population,” says Andreyev.

For Martynov, it is through this mechanism that independent media in Russia continue to reproduce their content, no matter how small the reach. The challenge now is to keep people interested in following news about war and human rights abuses after a year of bad news.

“At the moment we are struggling not only with this technical problem [de acesso às reportagens], but also against the cultural problem. The challenge is to get people interested in what we do,” he says.

Since the beginning of the conflicts in Ukraine, the Russian government’s pressure on the mass media has increased. Russia, for example, has decided that it is a crime to call what is happening in Eastern Europe a “war”. The phrase used by Putin’s government is “a special military operation”.


“The last year was very difficult for everyone in Russia. People fighting for human rights saw their dreams shattered by the war. This is disheartening,” Muratov insisted, warning that the Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the NGO’s memorial was important “to motivate activists to continue working for peace and human rights.”

“The Russian propaganda strategy is to try to show that the whole world is against us, that everyone hates Russia. This is their story. That is why it is so important to show internationally that Russians still believe in the future of democracy in our country. It breaks their history,” he says.


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