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MOSCOW, JUNE 13, 2013 – RT took top prize in the Best 24-Hour News Programme category at Europe’s most prestigious television festival.

The award-winning entry was RT’s comprehensive, round the clock coverage of the February 2013 Chelyabinsk meteorite crash.

“It’s extremely gratifying to be recognized by your peers, and I am very proud of all that our network has achieved at its relatively young age,” said Margarita Simonyan, RT’s editor in chief. “This award, first and foremost, is a credit to our correspondents, whose tireless efforts made it possible for viewers all around the world to learn the details of this historic event.”  

RT’s newscast covering the February 15th event kicked off when RT documentary crew working near the blast zone responded with first reports of a large explosion began providing real time details and first local reactions to the meteor crash. RT continuously broadcast live from location, and its video feeds were picked up by several international networks including Sky News and CNN. On the day of the crash, rt.com topped Google News for the search inquiries related to events in Chelyabinsk. 

RT’s footage of the event attracted a record-breaking 30 million views in less than a week and helped propel RT to the history-making billion views on YouTube – a first for a TV news channel. Mashable, a technology- and social media-focused news blog, dubbed RT’s “stunning and terrifying” video “the clear winner” among the meteor event footage.

RT’s anchor Bill Dod, who led the broadcast, and correspondent Egor Piskunov received the award on behalf of the network at the June 13th award ceremony in Monte Carlo. 

Monte-Carlo Television Festival, created in 1961 by Prince Rainier III of Monaco, recognizes television as an exceptional means of bringing cultures together and enhancing their respective knowledge. The best of television programming is rewarded with the Golden Nymphs statuettes.