EU Bans Russian Media to ‘Protect Freedom of Speech’, Top Official Claims

EU High Representative for Foreign Policy and Security, Josep Borrell, believes that the ban of a number of Russian media in Europe is “protection of freedom of speech.” 

“By doing this [banning a number of Russian media in Europe], we are not attacking freedom of speech, but protecting freedom of speech,” he claimed, speaking at a conference on combating disinformation, which is taking place in Brussels.

The EU representative recalled that the Union’s foreign policy service already has mechanisms in place to detect and counter disinformation. In his opinion, the EU in this matter “should act more ambitiously, strengthening its stability.”

“Today, I have a feeling that we are not doing enough, that we need to move forward. We need to understand how these disinformation campaigns are organized, identify actors, sources of dissemination,” Borrel added.

According to the head of the EU Diplomacy, at the present stage, information manipulation has acquired new features due to new tools, such as Internet and social networks.

Russian media suffers oppression in EU countries

The situation with the Russian media in the West has become increasingly complicated in recent years. In November 2016, the EU Parliament adopted a resolution stating the need to counter the Russian media, with Sputnik and RT named the main threats in the document.

A number of Western politicians, including American senators and congressmen, as well as the French president, accused Sputnik and RT of interfering in the elections in the USA and France, but did not provide any evidence. Russian officials refuted all the accusations.

Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, said earlier that Moscow did not expect the West to impose sanctions on journalists, athletes, and cultural representatives.

The head of the Human Rights Council under the President of the Russian Federation, Valery Fadeyev, sent an appeal to the OSCE representative on Freedom of the Media, Teresa Ribeiro, and urged her to take measures to comply with the norms concerning freedom of the press due to the harassment of Russian-language publications.

Ru-Main, 07.02.2023
Source: RIA Novosti

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