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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Inter TV Denies Stake Sale to Firtash

KIEV -- Ukraine's largest television station, Inter TV, denied on Thursday a news report that two of the country's prominent businessmen had acquired a large stake in the channel.

Kommersant, quoting a source at steel firm Evraz Group, said Wednesday that business magnates Dmitry Firtash and Vitaly Haiduk had bought a 61 percent stake in Inter from Alexander Abramov, Evraz's main owner.

"The Ukrainian Media Project company, which holds 61 percent of shares in the Independent TV Corporation, hereby states that information reported by some media about changes in the channel's ownership structure is untrue," the channel said in a statement.

Firtash owns 45 percent of RosUkrEnergo, an intermediary in Russian-Ukraine gas trade, while Haiduk is co-owner of the Industrial Union of Donbass group.

Inter said it intended to complain to the courts about the news reports.

It also said 29 percent of the channel belonged to Russia's Channel One television and 10 percent to Pegasus. It described former Ukrainian Economy Minister Valery Khoroshkovsky as the sole owner of Ukrainian Media Project.

A spokesman for Industrial Union of Donbass had previously said he could not confirm the deal had taken place.