Foreign agent Friday: Ukrainian producer Alexander Rodnyansky, Russian reporters Alexander Plyushchev, Tatyana Felgenhauer, Mikhail Zygar added to Russia’s ‘foreign agent’ list

The Russian Ministry of Justice has added Ukrainian producer Alexander Rodnyansky, Russian reporters Alexander Plyushchev and Tatyana Felgenhauer, former Russian lawmaker Ilya Ponomarev, politician Ruslan Gabbasov, author of Serditaya Chuvashia Telegram channel Semyon Kochkin, head of Transparency International Russia Ilya Shumanov, the widow of Russian oligarch Dmitry Bosov Katerina Bosov, and former editor-in-chief of Dozhd TV channel Mikhail Zygar.

Mikhail Zygar was placed on the list of media outlets acting as foreign agents, while the rest were added to the list of individuals acting as foreign agents.

According to the ministry, all “foreign agent” individuals were involved in political activity. Everyone but Shumanov is financed by Ukraine, the justice ministry claims. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, which was previously dubbed as a “foreign agent”, too, is stated as Shumanov’s source of funding. Besides, the ministry suggests that Gabbasov was also founded by RFE/RL, while Felgenhauer and Plyushchev were financed by Deutsche Welle.

Everyone but Katerina Bosov has spoken out against the war in Ukraine. Bosov is not involved in political activity. After the death of her husband, coal oligarch Dmitry Bosov, she was a suspect in several criminal cases related to the division of her late husband’s assets.

A week ago, the Russian Interior Ministry issued an arrest warrant for Ponomarev. In late August, he was charged in absentia under Russia’s “fake news” law.

Last week, current editor-in-chief of Dozhd TV channel Tikhon Dzyadko made it to the “foreign agent” list as well.

Three weeks ago, the Echo of Moscow radio station announced its relaunch under the name Echo. Plyushchev and Felgenhauer are among the radio hosts. The station was taken off air on 1 March by Russia’s censorship agency Roskomnadzor as a result of its coverage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Transparency International was deemed a “foreign agent” back in 2015.

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