MOSCOW — The Russian Foreign Ministry said journalist Andrei Babitsky was not properly accredited to interview terrorist Shamil Basayev for the U.S. TV channel ABC. "To carry out journalistic work within the Russian Federation, accreditation is needed from the Foreign Ministry. Also, to carry out investigative work within a zone in which counter-terrorism operations are underway, you need accreditation from the Interior Ministry. Babitsky had neither."
ABC aired the Basayev interview on July 28 after requests from Moscow to scrap the feature.
The Russian Interior Ministry said Tuesday that the Russian accreditation of ABC staff will not be renewed.
"Russia, taking into account all of the circumstances of the airing of the interview with internationally recognized terrorist Shamil Basayev, and the obvious support being given to terrorist propaganda directly calling for violence against Russian citizens, has decided that on the expiry of the current accreditations of the employees of this television channel, they will not be renewed," a ministry statement said.
The Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry also said that contact between the television channel and any Russian governmental organizations or departments is undesirable.
Andrei Babitsky is an employee of the Russian radio station Svoboda.
"The circumstances surrounding the arranging and conducting of the interview still need to be clarified with his employer," the ministry statement said.