RUSSIA – Tired of reporting on the astonishing march on Moscow led by a small army of mercenaries? After a “tense” weekend, Russian authorities on Sunday advised journalists to take a day off for themselves. An armed insurgency led by mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin, who on Friday threatened to oust Russian military leaders and began a march on Moscow, has sparked the country’s biggest political crisis in decades and forced several newsrooms to operate 24 hours a day in response to the changing situation.
Despite Wagner’s leader Prigozhin abruptly calling off his uprising on Saturday night, authorities in Moscow have rolled out “anti-terror” measures and announced that people will have a day off on Monday. On Sunday, Russia’s Digital Development Ministry added its voice to the chorus of voices calling for a day of rest for journalists and those working in information technology.
“Saturday was a very emotional and tense day,” the Department for Digital Development, Communications and Media said in a statement posted on social media. We strongly suggest that employers in the media, IT and telecommunications sectors give their staff a day off. The ministry singled out workers who were employed by organizations that operated around the clock as well as media workers who operated in places that were “at the epicenter of events”, saying these people needed an opportunity to rest. According to the press release, “we therefore also took this decision for our employees”, which referred to the fact that “many employees of the Ministry of Digital Development spent the weekend at their workplace”. Many people in Russia and other countries, as well as seasoned political observers, were left dumbfounded by the failure of Wagner’s uprising. Prigozhin’s goals remain unclear to them.