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Moldovan TV channels obliged to report on removal of Russian newscasts from air

January 16, 2018, 20:57 UTC+3 CHISINAU

The Moldovan broadcasters who violate the ban will face penalties of up to $ 5,000

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CHISINAU, January 16. /TASS/. Moldova’s broadcasting coordination council passed a decision on Tuesday to oblige the country’s television channels to report on steps under the new law "on fighting with Russian propaganda".

The document underlined the importance of "ensuring security and preventing provocations in Moldova information space," "to shield the consumer from disinformation and propaganda and to stop transmission of news, analysis and defense shows from the countries that didn’t ratify the European Convention on Transfrontier Television."

The board also promised to assist the channels by drawing up a full list of countries, transmission of new and analysis shows from which is banned.

On December 7, 2017, Moldovan parliament hastily passed a law banning transmission of newscasts, as well as analysis and defense shows from the countries that did not ratify the European Convention on Transfrontier Television, including Russia.

The ban concerns, first and foremost, the shows produced by Russian channels. The Moldovan broadcasters who violate the ban will face penalties of up to $ 4,000 for the first time and up to $ 5,000 for repeated violations.

The authorities published the law of January 12 and it will take legal effect in 30 days’ period of time.

President Igor Dodon refused to sign the law. He sized up its adoption as an overt attempt on the Moldovan citizens’ freedom of information.

"The case in hand is censorship based on double standards, quite in the style of the Democrats ruling in this country," he said.

After the country’s Constitution Court responded to the petition by the Democratic Party deputies and suspended the execution of presidential powers by Dodon provisionally, the controversial law was signed by parliament speaker Andrian Candu.

The Russian Foreign Ministry’s official spokesperson, Maria Zakharova said on her part the ban on transmission of Russian newscasts and analysis shows in Moldova called for a reaction on the part of the OSCE and other official European organizations.

She said Russia reserved the right to respond to the discrimination against Russian media in Moldova.

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