Anger over the New Year's Eve broadcast by Inter, Ukraine's major television channel, centers on the appearance of pop singers who support the separatist movement in the country.
Government officials condemned the New Year's Eve concert, taped in Moscow, in which featured prominent singers who have supported Russian incursions into Crimea and Ukraine appeared.
One, singer Iosif Kobzon, is a deputy in the Russian parliament; he appeared with singers Valeria and Oleg Gazmanov in a segment in which they stood behind a border gate and performed a song ridiculing Western sanctions against Russia.
Oleksandr Turchynov, Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council Secretary, accused Inter of "acting against the Ukrainian state," and, writing on the Council's website Thursday, added that "In the New Year's Eve, when the whole nation felt unity, the Inter television channel traditionally acted against the Ukrainian state by broadcasting a concert of people who mocked our country, supporting terrorists and welcoming the seizure of Crimea and Donbas," a reference to the former Ukrainian province seized by Russia and the site of current conflict in eastern Ukraine.
Yuriy Stets, Ukraine's Minister of Information Policy, threatened to introduce legislation banning all Russian performers from Ukrainian television, adding he is aware he cannot order the withdrawal of Inter's broadcasting license.