A Russian newscaster made quite a statement when she flipped off President Barack Obama live on air.
Tatyana Limanova, an award-winning journalist from privately-owned Russian television channel REN TV, was reading a segment about the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation conference when she made the offensive symbol – just as she said the U.S. president’s name.
She was looking down as she spoke about how Russian president Dmitry Medvedev would be assuming the head of the conference as part of the rotating chairmanship.
But as she read that the post was previously held by Mr Obama, she distinctly raised her arm – and then her middle finger,
Ms Limanova’s station declined to comment about the incident.
Given the timing of the segment, Ms Limanova may have thought that she was off camera when she ‘flipped the bird’, considering there was a cut-away video segment shortly following her move.
REN TV is transmitted to roughly 120 million people in Russia, and is considered to be one of the more liberal channels in a country where the media is tightly controlled by the government.
Sources said that Ms Limanova would not be facing any formal punishment from her employers.
Ms Limanova may well have been making her own analysis of recent relations between the two superpowers.
Mr Obama and Mr Medvedev are said to have a somewhat frosty relationship, and that has not been helped by recent moves to limit the sharing of information between the two.
The U.S. said that it is going to stop giving the Russian government with specific updates about the American military presence in Europe.
That said, the move comes four years after the Russians did the same.
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