Russia’s foreign minister on Wednesday banned around 121 Australians, including out gay ABC journalist Patricia Karvelas, from entering the country “indefinitely” over what it termed a “Russophobic agenda”. 

The list included prominent Australian journalists, mining magnates Gina Rinehart and Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest, ABC chairperson Ita Buttrose and South Australian Premier Peter Malinauskas.

The foreing ministry’s statement said that “entry to the Russian Federation for these persons is closed on an indefinite basis in response to the growing sanctions of the Australian government, which apply to an increasing number of Russian citizens – both officials and their families, as well as representatives of the business community and the media.”

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Russia said that it would continue adding other Australians to its “stop-list”. Australia and other countries had imposed sanctions on Russia after  it invaded Ukraine in February. 

Waking Up To News Of Being Banned

The RN Breakfast host said she woke up to the news of being added to Russia’s ‘stop-list’ early in the morning.  “Waking to news of being sanctioned by Russia at 3:30am was a hallucination reality dreamscape I didn’t imagine for my Friday,” Karvelas posted on Twitter. 

Karvelas also posted a video from the ABC studio. “It seems only right and proper to bring you a show which demonstrates our country at its best and our country has a very free press,” she added. 

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Karvelas’ social media posts about Kremlin sanctioning her received some humorous responses. “Once you know Putin’s not keen on you, you’re probably best off not going to Russia anyway,  said Victoria’s Tourism Minister Martin Pakula. 

Out And Proud

Earlier this year, Karvelas took over hosting duties on the RN Breakfast show from another out gay journalist, veteran broadcaster and Fran Kelly.

Karvelas and her partner Peta Sirec have two children. She told Star Observer in May that she had been out since she was very young.

Ordinary Australians Don’t Want Culture Wars, Says Patricia Karvelas

“I have decided that it’s important to be very out in my public life because seeing gay people in public life would have made an enormous difference to my life. It would have really reduced the angst that I wish I had never endured. So if I can play any small part in reducing that for others, then I want to do that.”

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