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ST. PETERSBURG, June 3. /TASS/. The Russian Foreign Ministry’s spokeswoman Maria Zakharova suggested setting up an international mechanism to counteract false information disseminated by the media.
"I think that a mechanism of protection against hoax information must be created," she said at a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, headlined "Hoax vs. Truth: challenges of the modern information world."
"We are trying to somehow spur a discussion regarding the creation of a certain global mechanism, an instrument that would counteract the spread of false information," she went on.
She added that the issue was raised within the framework of the UN General Assembly’s information committee in April, but it met fierce opposition from the United States.
The diplomat said that a mechanism of this kind should be developed with the assistance of professional journalists, including news agencies with global outreach from Russia, Asia, Middle East and other regions.
The chief of Germany’s DPA news agency said the initiative may lead to censorship and the creation of "a Ministry of Truth," a nod to George Orwell's futuristic fiction dystopia novel Nineteen Eighty-Four.
"Nothing of this kind was proposed," she said. "I’ve never heard of proposals to create a state-run mechanism."
She said the proposal is aimed at establishing an "information analogue of the United Nations," where "solely members of the professional community will have the authority to speak of disinformation tendencies that emerge within this or that subject" and "will be involved in fact-checking."
"Surely, state mechanisms must not be allowed to dominate the professional community," she said. "We may refute fals information, but we never impose our point of view on information agencies or other media.".