Russian journalist says he watched TV coverage of his 'murder' after faking death with pig's blood

Russian officials have claimed the incident was an effort by Kiev to achieve a "certain propaganda effect"

Russian journalist says he watched TV coverage of his 'murder' after faking death with pig's blood

Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko. Picture by: Valentyn Ogirenko/AP/Press Association Images

The Russian journalist who faked his own death has today revealed pig's blood and a make-up artist were used to help stage his murder.

Arkady Babchenko - a prominent Kremlin critic who says he fled Russia to Ukraine after receiving threats - has explained he was taken away in an ambulance from the scene of his 'death' in Kiev.

He then watched the news of his demise play out on television.

Officials in Ukraine yesterday told reporters the country's security agency had faked Mr Babchenko's death in an attempt to foil a Russian assassination attempt.

Mr Babchenko has been speaking at a news conference this afternoon, a day after he unexpectedly appeared 'alive' following the widely-covered news of his death.

He explained: "In the very end I made that shirt with bullet holes in it and I lay on the floor. It was real pig's blood on me.

"They have poured blood over me, I took some of it in my mouth and let it out. They tucked some blood clots into the bullet holes. And I was dead."

He has previously apologised to his wife, saying there was 'no other option'.

One person has been arrested in connection with the alleged effort to kill the journalist.

Russia - who Ukrainian officials have accused of being behind the plot - have said they are pleased Babchenko is alive, but have raised concerns over the situation.

In a statement, the Russian foreign ministry said: "As a direct consequence of these actions, obviously designed to attaint a certain propaganda effect, the entire global community, which quickly responded to the reports of a media representative from Ukraine, was in fact misled.

"Now we are learning the true motives for this staged incident that was apparently another anti-Russia provocation."

It added: "We have to state that, in Ukraine, matters of life and death and the trust of the international community in its policy are nothing but a bargaining chip in Kiev’s efforts to incite anti-Russia hysteria."