NEWS: President Zelensky praises reporters, after Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch visits Ukraine
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky praised the courageous reporters who have risked their lives to cover Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine — after inviting Fox Corporation CEO Lachlan Murdoch for a sit-down in Kyiv.
Lachlan Murdoch, 52, traveled to Ukraine’s capital Monday with Fox News correspondent Benjamin Hall and The Sun reporter Jerome Starkey.
The wartime president publicly thanked them for their “comprehensive coverage of Ukraine’s fight against Russian aggression” and for telling the world about “Russian atrocities despite the risks to themselves.”
Zelensky also touted the visit as a “very important signal” of support at a time when global media attention has shifted from the war in Ukraine, which is nearing its 21st month, to the conflict now raging between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.
Hall, who was photographed at the meeting with a prosthetic leg, was part of a group of Fox News reporters who came under Russian fire in March 2022.
Cameraman Pierre Zakrzewski, 55, and Ukrainian fixer Oleksandra “Sasha” Kuvshynova, 24, were killed in an explosion while making their way through the abandoned village of Horenka.
Zelensky awarded the Order of Merit to Hall for his “outstanding personal contribution to strengthening interstate cooperation, support for Ukraine’s independence and territorial integrity.”
“All this time, journalists, cameramen, editors, photographers, drivers have been on the frontline. As this is a hybrid war, information is also a weapon in Russian hands,” Zelenksy said.
“My sincere condolences to the families and friends of those very brave men and women who lost their lives trying to show what is happening in Ukraine. In particular, it is thanks to journalists from many countries that we now have such support in the world.”
During his first trip back to Ukraine since his brush with death 18 months ago, Hall also got the chance to interview Zelensky, with the sit-down scheduled to be aired Tuesday on “Special Report with Bret Baier.”
Hall also met with Ukrainian special forces servicemen who helped carry him to safety after the bombing.
The journalist has since undergone some 30 surgeries, lost his right leg below the knee, his left foot, the use of his left hand and the sight in his left eye.
Hall, a married dad-of-three, documented his incredible tale of survival and grueling recovery in a memoir published earlier this year, titled, “Saved: A War Reporter’s Mission to Make It Home.”
Just hours after Murdoch’s meeting with Zelensky in Kyiv, the Pentagon announced additional military aid for Ukraine valued at $100 million.
This latest package will include Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, HIMARS, Javelin anti-armor systems, artillery rounds, more than 3 million rounds of small arms ammunition and other equipment needed “to help Ukraine defend its sovereign territory and fight for its freedom from Russia’s ongoing war of aggression,” the Pentagon said in a press release.
This new round of military assistance was first unveiled by Secretary of State Lloyd Austin during his own surprise visit to Kyiv on Monday.
“The message that I bring you today, Mr. President, is that the United States of America is with you. We will remain with you for the long haul,” Austin told Zelensky.
US ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink said the visit showed Washington’s “unwavering support to Ukraine in its fight for freedom.”