Russia has placed popular sci-fi video game writer Dmitry Glukhovsky on its federal wanted list after he was accused of spreading false information about his country’s intervention in Ukraine.
In a Telegram post, Glukhovsky wrote that he stood accused of discrediting Russia’s armed forces in an Instagram post where he wrote, “I am ready to repeat everything said there: “Stop the war! Admit that this is a war against the whole people and stop it! Stop this war immediately!”
It didn’t take long for the Russian Interior Ministry website to list Glukhovsky, who is best known for his fantastic work on ’Metro 2033’ sci-fi novel as well as its sequels, a wanted man under an unspecified article of the criminal code.
Russia has already targeted opposition figures and journalists with a law seeking jail terms of 15 years for individuals convicted of knowingly spreading “fake” news its military.
The new law was adopted days after Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, 2022 and according to Reuters, Glukhovsky is is the first major cultural figure to be placed on the wanted list.
Russia’s case against Glukhovsky, who has been outspoken on social media about Moscow’s military campaign, prompted indignation among other Russian opposition figures.
Lyubov Sobol, an ally of Alexei Navalny, a jailed Kremlin critic wrote on Twitter, “Putin used to fear politicians, but now he fears writers too.”
In response to Glukhovsky’s addition to the wanted list, the team of another jailed opposition activists, Andrei Pivovarov wrote on Twitter: “The repression machine will roll everyone over.”
Moscow has issued a statement that says its “special military operation” is designed to demilitarise Ukraine and protect its Russian-speakers from persecution.
However, Ukraine as well as many Western countries have dismissed these claims as baseless pretexts for a land grab that has led to the death of thousands and displaced millions.