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Russia to further examine provocative interview on BBC website

August 05, 2014, 20:18 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The examination is aimed at confirming an apparent violation of the law, the agency’s press service said
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© EPA/ANDY RAIN

MOSCOW, August 05. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian telecommunications regulator Roskomnadzor will examine once more a provocative interview with a Siberian activist who called on people to attend an unsanctioned protest, published by on BBC's local website.

The examination is aimed at confirming an apparent violation of the law, the agency’s press service said on Tuesday, adding that it was premature to talk about any possible measures against the BBC Russian Service until the investigation was completed.

In the BBC interview with Artem Loskutov last week the activist urged people to attend a so-called “March for a Federal Siberia” in support of giving the Siberia region more rights within Russia.

Roskomnadzor said in a statement that the general prosecutor's office had earlier asked it to stem the flow of information about the proposed event.

The regulator said it had “repeatedly sent” notices to the BBC Russian Service and accused its website of purposely ignoring state orders. “If the editorial staff of the BBC Russian Service, unlike most other Russian media, continues assuming an unconstructive stance, Roskomnadzor will have no alternative... but to block the BBC Russian Service website,” it added.

BBC Russian Service's acting head, Artyom Liss, said in a blog post earlier that in response to a Roskomnadzor request to remove the material considered “extremist” editors had added an introduction to the interview featuring the artist's own description of the event as nothing more than a “parody” that in no way promoted Siberia's independence from Moscow.

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