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15 May, 2024 21:10

EU to sanction more Russian-language news outlets

Brussels will add a news agency and two major newspapers to its blacklist
EU to sanction more Russian-language news outlets

EU ambassadors have agreed to place three Russian news outlets under sanctions, a move that would effectively ban them across the bloc. Moscow has threatened to take “retaliatory measures” against Western journalists in Russia.

The decision affects Russian state-owned news agency RIA Novosti, the newspapers Rossiyskaya Gazeta and Izvestia, and Voice of Europe, a Czech news site accused by officials in Brussels and Prague of spreading pro-Russian “propaganda,” EU Commissioner for Values and Transparency Vera Jourova announced on Wednesday.

Jourova did not specify what measures would be taken against the outlets, but news organizations already sanctioned by the EU – namely RT and Sputnik – lost broadcasting rights in the EU and had their websites blocked across the union.

Once agreed to by EU foreign ministers, the sanctions will likely come into force as part of the bloc’s 14th round of economic penalties on Russia. EU officials hope to agree on the package – which also includes sanctions on Russia’s energy sector and export restrictions on goods used by the Russian military – at a summit in late June.

“If these measures are taken against the Russian media…then, despite the fact that Western correspondents will not want to, they will also have to feel our retaliatory measures,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said earlier on Wednesday. “We will respond with lightning speed and extremely painfully for the Westerners,” she added.