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Shambles: Latvia bans RT, saying it’s ‘managed’ by EU-sanctioned journalist… who heads DIFFERENT outlet with comparable title

Shambles: Latvia bans RT, saying it’s ‘controlled’ by EU-sanctioned journalist… who heads DIFFERENT outlet with similar name


Latvia’s media council has introduced a whole ban on seven RT channels, declaring falsely that they’re “below the efficient management” of an individual topic to sanctions imposed by the European Union.

The individual in query is well-known Russian broadcaster Dmitry Kiselyov, who in actual fact heads a very totally different information group referred to as Rossiya Segodnya — a primary fact-check that the intense sparks at Latvia’s Nationwide Digital Media Council (NEPLP) seemingly did not conduct.

Kiselyov has certainly been below EU sanctions since Crimea voted for reunification with Russia in 2014, however he has nothing to do with RT or its broadcasting.

After all, the knee-jerk transfer to banish RT based mostly on false info may have been averted had the council taken even a cursory look at both RT or Rossiya Segodnya’s Wikipedia pages.

Fully unaware that it had banned the unsuitable information group, the NEPLP wrote in a dramatic assertion that the “proof” it had obtained towards RT and Kiselyov is “very sturdy.”

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RT’s fundamental channel, in addition to its Arabic, Spanish and Documentary channels, fall below the brand new ban.

The NEPLP additionally introduced its intention to “inform media regulators in different EU international locations” of the choice it has taken and considers {that a} “comparable ban” on distribution of RT could be “acceptable” throughout the EU.

It’s most likely secure to imagine for now, nonetheless, {that a} blanket ban on RT throughout the EU isn’t imminent.

Responding to the transfer, RT’s Press Service supplied congratulations to the NEPLP, given that it’s going to now “lastly will be capable of shield the Arab- and Spanish-speaking” demographics in Latvia from the “most influential Russian propaganda channel” within the West.

RT’s (actual) editor-in-chief, Margarita Simonyan (who isn’t below EU sanctions), additionally responded to Riga’s blunder, noting a development of sensational and sometimes outlandish claims made by Western intelligence businesses.

“Latvian intelligence believes that RT is headed by Dmitry Kiselyov. American intelligence believes {that a} program I hosted in 2011 [on] a neighborhood Russian channel influenced the US election. British intelligence believes that the Skripals have been poisoned by Boshirov and Petrov. In order that’s excellent news,” Simonyan mentioned, including that with such intelligence providers, Russia has little to be anxious about.

The Worldwide Federation of Journalists additionally reacted to the ban, with its basic secretary, Anthony Bellanger, saying that it “violates freedom of the press, the correct of residents to media pluralism and is a transparent act of censorship.” The press freedom group demanded the lifting of the ban “instantly.”

The NEPLP mentioned the Latvian ban will stay in drive “till Kiselyov is eliminated” from the EU sanctions record — or, presumably, till the nation’s regulator realizes its mistake… and finds one other pretext.

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