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World Cup reporter says case closed after man apologises for groping her on air

Julieth Gonzales Theran was reporting from Saransk when a man came into shot, groped her and kissed her on the cheek.

The television reporter who was groped by a man during a broadcast has said she wants to draw a line under the episode after he apologised.

Julieth Gonzales Theran said she considered the case was closed after the man, named Ruslan, contacted the channel to explain his actions.

She was reporting from World Cup host city Saransk, 400 miles east of Moscow, when he came from the right of the shot, groped her and kissed her on the cheek.

The journalist, who did not pause her piece to camera during or after the incident, was working for the Spanish news channel of German network Deutsche Welle (DW).

Ruslan got in touch after the incident provoked a social media storm.

He told the channel he had made a bet with a friend that he could kiss a reporter live on air but he had intended to grab Ms Theran’s shoulder, not her chest.

In a video call with the journalist shared by DW, Ruslan said: “I am really sorry.

“I offer you my most profound apologies. I acted carelessly and did not think I would cause you confusion and shock.”

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Les agradezco a cada uno de ustedes por todos los mensajes de apoyo y de solidaridad. Es un episodio lamentable que ya cerré y dejé atrás. Como reporteros en este campo estamos expuestos a este tipo de situaciones. Trabajo hace más de cinco años en el periodismo deportivo. Este año que transcurrió tuve una gran temporada con ESPN cubriendo la Bundesliga y Champions League y además los tours de la Selección Colombia en Asia y Europa. No quiero presentarme aquí como víctima, solo quiero poder continuar con mi trabajo. Lastimosamente esto ha ocasionado que no pueda trabajar como lo planeado, si no en un formato más limitado y bajo parámetros de seguridad estrictos. No veo la hora que vuelva a concentrarme en el fútbol. Estar en Rusia, en mi primer mundial, fue y es un sueño que estoy viviendo al máximo.

A post shared by Julieth González Therán (@juliethgonzaleztheran) on

Ms Theran replied: “I appreciate that you reached out to me to apologise for your misconduct.

“What happened was unacceptable and disrespectful.

“But it’s the right thing to do and I accept it.”

Earlier, she said she had had to get extra security in order to continue doing her job.

Ms Theran said on Twitter: “With the apologies of Ruslan I close this case, now it is focus on the World Cup.”

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