Over the past two months, Oleg Blokhin has attempted to travel to Russia to cover the war in Ukraine and his detention was apparently a precautionary measure to control his movements.
Oleg Blokhin could end up being deported to Ukraine, where he would have citizenship [Twitter-archive]
The Syrian regime’s intelligence services arrested Russian war correspondent Oleg Blokhin on Sunday, according to Russian media.
The reasons for the detention are unknown, but according to a report by the Readovka website, Blokhin’s relationship with Moscow’s current military rulers in Syria has been poor recently.
Blokhin had attempted to travel to Russia for the past two months to cover the war in Ukraine and his detention was apparently a precaution taken to control his movements.
The journalist could end up being deported to Ukraine, of which he would be a national.
Blokhin was arrested at 5 p.m. on Sunday by the regime’s intelligence services, according to Andrey Medvedev, a Russian journalist whose Telegram message was quoted by the Syrian opposition news site. Enab Baladi.
Medvedev called Blokhin “a man of incredible courage”, saying he “worked throughout the Syrian conflict at the forefront”.
He added that the Blokhin had filmed Russian-backed military assaults on Aleppo and Palmyra.
Russian release Novorosinform said Blokhin was arrested “at the request of the Russian command”.
Blokhin is perhaps the most famous Russian war correspondent to have accompanied his country’s military to Syria, including Idlib.
Moscow intervened in Syria’s civil war in 2015 on the side of President Bashar Al-Assad’s regime.
Along with Iran and Hezbollah, Russia is one of the regime’s main allies.