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Moldova banned Russian TV channel to please US, EU - Moldovan lawmaker

July 05, 2014, 0:18 UTC+3 CHISINAU
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CHISINAU, July 04, /ITAR-TASS/. Moldova has banned rebroadcasting of Russia’s Russia 24 television channel being driven by the desire to please the United States and the European Union, Konstantin Starysh, a lawmaker with the Party of Communists and former chief of the Moldovan office of the MIR television company, told Itar-Tass on Friday.

“Nearly half of lawmakers were against the ratification of Moldova’s association agreement with the European Union out of fears that it might complicate relations with Russia,” he said. “The authorities tried to persuade us that they would do their best to remain in good relations with the strategic partner. And here is their first step - to ban Russian television channels in the territory of the republic.”

“It was done with a single goal to please Washington and Brussels, which are dissatisfied with the way the Russian mass media cover the developments in Ukraine and in post-Soviet republics,” he noted. “Regrettably, Western partners are only saying they are committed to the freedom of speech but, as a matter of fact, they encourage Moldova’s authorities to exert pressure on the disagreeable mass media. Despite public protest, they closed the only opposition television channel, NIT. Moreover, they limited showing films in the Russian language at cinemas.”

He recalled that when the Party of Communists was in power, a number of state institutions were controlled by the oppositions. “And the West accused us of dictatorship. And now, pro-European parties, which are violating human rights and the freedom of the press, enjoy full support there,” he said

On Friday, Moldova’s coordinating council on television and broadcasting suspended broadcasting of Russia 24 television channel in Moldova till January 1, 2015, substantiating its decision by “non-conformity of the television channel’s programmes to the provisions of the code of Moldova’s television and radio.” Apart from that, the council issued a warning to TV7 and Prime, which rebroadcast news programmes of Russia’s television channels NTV and Channel One.

Russia 24 was rebroadcast in Moldova only by cable operators. Earlier, this channel was banned in Ukraine.

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