An emergency television and radio broadcast apparently from President Vladimir Putin announcing that Ukraine had invaded Russia was the result of a hacker attack, the Kremlin has acknowledged. The fake ad claimed that “Ukrainian troops armed to the teeth by NATO and with the consent and support of Washington have invaded the Kursk, Belgorod and Bryansk regions.” He also falsely announced that martial law had been declared and that a general evacuation of citizens was underway in the three border regions.
Putin “definitely” did not make any appeals to the nation and the pirated broadcast shown on various networks has been removed, Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov said, according to the state news service Tass. There was no indication as to who may have been involved and how the broadcast appeared to include the president’s voice and likeness.
One of the stations that was hacked, Radio Mir, said the incident lasted around 40 minutes.
The message recreated the style of those of Stalin and Molotov with the Nazi invasion
The broadcast seemed to have echoes of the responses of the leaders of the Soviet Union at the beginning of the Nazi German invasion on June 22, 1941. The Soviet Foreign Minister at the time, Vyacheslav Molotov, said that the invasion had begun at 4 a.m. in a radio address that day that ended with the words “the enemy will be defeated. Victory will be ours.” Stalin, for his part, addressed the population as “brothers and sisters” in a July 3 speech calling for resistance to the invaders.