EU reacts to Russia’s decision to block 81 European media outlets

The European Union has condemned Russia’s decision to block access to European media in Russia. The European Commission Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs, Peter Stano, made this statement.

According to him, the European Union condemns Russia’s decision. He called the actions of the Russian Federation unreasonable and politically motivated. 

“It further restricts Russians’ limited and censored access to free information” – Brussels

“The EU condemns the Russian decision to ban 81 European media outlets in Russia. This decision further restricts the already tightly controlled and restricted and censored access of the Russian population to independent and free information.”

Peter Stano, European Commission Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs

He added that the goal of the European media was to provide the Russian population with independent information, including information about Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.

Moscow restricted access to 81 European media in Russia

The Russian Foreign Ministry announced on June 25 that in response to the EU’s decision to block some Russian media it restricted access to the websites of 81 European media outlets in Russia.

The Russian diplomatic agency said that the restrictions cover the media of the European Union countries that “systematically disseminate false information about the course of the special military operation.” The Kremlin authorities use this term to refer to Russia’s war against Ukraine.

The list of Russian Foreign Ministry publications includes the French Agence France-Presse, Le Monde, the German Der Spiegel, the Spanish and Italian newspapers El Mundo and La Repubblica, the Estonian version of Delfi, and the European and American editions of Politico.

The Foreign Ministry added that Russia had warned of a response to “politically motivated harassment of domestic journalists and unjustified bans on Russian media in the EU.”

At the same time, they noted that they were willing to change the decision to block European media if the EU did not restrict Russian media’s work.

EU imposed sanctions on 4 Russian propaganda outlets

On May 17, the European Union imposed sanctions on four Russian propaganda outlets: “Voice of Europe, RIA Novosti, Izvestia, and Rossiyskaya Gazeta, banning them from broadcasting and publishing in the EU.

“The Commission welcomes the decision of the Council of the EU to suspend the broadcasting of four more media outlets (Voice of Europe, RIA Novosti, Izvestia, and Rossiyskaya Gazeta) in the EU or targeting the EU, given their role in supporting and justifying Russia’s aggressive war against Ukraine,” the statement said.

The restriction is based on the fact that “Russia has engaged in continuous and concerted propaganda as well as information manipulation actions targeted at civil society in the EU and neighbouring countries, gravely distorting and manipulating facts. These propaganda actions have been channelled through a number of media outlets under the permanent direct or indirect control of the leadership of the Russian Federation.”

According to the report, these media outlets, which are under the constant direct or indirect control of the Russian leadership, pose a “significant and direct threat to public order and security of the Union.”

The press release stated, “We should maintain the measures until the aggression against Ukraine ends and until the Russian Federation and its affiliated media stop disinformation and manipulation of information against the EU and its member states.”

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