Washington demands that RT should register as foreign agent by November 13

Trevor Jackson
November 11, 2017

"As of today, there is understanding that a practical phase of these response measures (in respect of US media in Russian Federation over demands the RT broadcaster register itself as a foreign agent in the U.S.) will begin next week".

Sergei Neverov, parliamentary head of the pro-Kremlin party United Russia, said "we'll not just draft proposals, but a commission will work out broader measures, which may include social media networks".

The Russian parliament on Friday signaled that it will force some American news outlets working there to register as foreign agents.

"When it comes down to a fight with no rules, when the law is twisted and turned into an instrument for the destruction of a TV company, every step against a Russian media outlet will be met with a corresponding response", she said.

"We believe that the demand does not only go against the law, and we will prove it in court", RT's editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan said Thursday, according to the website. "Between those consequences and registering as a foreign agent, we are forced to choose registration".

Russian news media and social media actors have come under scrutiny after USA intelligence agencies concluded in January that Russia sought to interfere with the US presidential election to help Donald Trump win.

Volodin said Russian Federation could extend its own law on foreign agents to foreign media in response to Washington's "hostile" actions.

Russian Federation in 2012 passed a controversial law that requires foreign funded non-governmental organizations to register as foreign agents.

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The 2012 Russian law now applies only to non-governmental organizations that receive foreign funding and are considered to engage in political activity.

The Duma is obliged to give its laws two preliminary approvals before passing them, which Volodin said could happen next week.

"Reciprocal measures will be put in place to ensure the same restrictions as the Americans are now trying to impose on Russian media outlets", Tolstoy said.

In the past, Russian Federation has threatened to target Radio Free Europe and the Voice of America, both of which receive USA government funding.

The Broadcasting Board of Governors, which oversees Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, said earlier this year that it would focus on countering "aggressive Russian pressure and disinformation" by providing "factual information and alternatives" to Russian speakers.

Russian news media reported in October that the upper house of the Russian parliament had drawn up a blacklist of at least five US media outlets whose activities in Russia could be restricted in response.

Human rights groups have condemned the label, who say it echoes Soviet-era attacks on dissidents.

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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