Russian President, Vladimir Putin, has signed a new federal law granting authorities the power to take tit-for-tat measures in response to the discrimination of Russian media abroad. This decision came after the EU started to ban Russian media, such as Sputnik and RT.
As specified, the law gives the prosecutor general and his deputies the power to ban the activities of foreign media in Russia, and to temporarily suspend the licenses of Russian media for the publication of false information (for up to three months for the first violation, and up to six months for the next ones).
It is noted that the law was passed by the State Duma, Russia’s lower house of parliament, in late June, and approved by the Federation Council (the upper house). It allows for media broadcast licenses to be terminated on the request of the prosecutor general, but restored on the decision of Federal Service for Supervision in the Sphere of Telecom, Information Technologies and Mass Communications (Roskomnadzor), if the offending information is removed.
The package of measures also amends the 1991 Law on Mass Media, and with journalists proven to spread fake news about the Russian military, or publish materials which “express disrespect for society and the state,” promote unrest, or information in favor of sanctions against Russia or Russian businessmen, to face liability.