EU to ban Russian RT and Sputnik media, says von der Leyen – Reuters

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on Sunday that Kremlin-backed RT, formerly known as Russia Today, and Sputnik, would be banned in the EU.

“We are going to ban the Kremlin media machine in the EU. State-owned Russia Today and Sputnik, and their affiliates, will no longer be able to spread their lies to justify Putin’s war,” he added. she says.

“We are developing tools to ban their toxic and harmful misinformation in Europe,” von der Leyen added, without giving further details.

Kremlin-backed media have come under increased pressure in Europe since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine. Polish and Estonian regulators have in recent days banned Russian TV broadcasters while Western countries including the UK and France have renewed their scrutiny of RT. The power to shut down broadcasters is in the hands of national regulators.

In recent weeks, a massive information war has been fought both online and offline between Kremlin-backed news outlets and online trolls, media outlets and actors in Ukraine and across Ukraine. ‘West. According to French public radio France Inter, RT France’s coverage of Ukraine was manifestly biased and biased in favor of the Russian government.

Russia may decide to retaliate after the Commission President’s statement: when Germany banned RT Deutsch in early February, Moscow forced German media outlet Deutsche Welle to shut down its Russian operations.

Von der Leyen’s comments come hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his nuclear forces to be on high alert, after complaining about the West’s response to the invasion of the ‘Ukraine.

Cédric O, Minister Delegate for Digital Affairs welcomed statement by von der Leyen. France currently holds the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU.


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