The war in Ukraine also falls on the media. The battle around the RT France TV channel is proof of that. RT is officially funded by Russia. But during this conflict, which lasts almost a year between Moscow and Kyiv, he is accused of “misinformation”. So much so that from March 2, 2022, its distribution is prohibited in the European Union. But on Friday, RT France unions denounced the freezing of the channel’s accounts in France. Moscow’s response was immediate.
“With this sanction, almost 100 employees and about fifty journalists will probably become unemployed”were conveyed in a press release by the FO (Force Ouvrière) and SNJ (Syndicate of Journalists) sections of RT France, depending on who counts them “they are frozen by decision of the State” french This Saturday, Moscow pledged to take retaliatory measures against French media in Russia.
“The freezing of RT France accounts will lead to retaliatory measures against French media in Russia. They will be recalled if the French authorities do not stop terrorizing Russian journalists.warned a source in Russian diplomacy, cited by Russian news agencies Ria Novosti and Tass.
Apply European sanctions
Asked by AFP, the French Ministry of Economy explained that the assets of the chain had been frozen in application of the most recent European sanctions and not by direct initiative of the French State. Unlike the initial sanctions decided after Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine in February 2022, those adopted in December provide for a “asset freeze” of the interested entities, specified this source. Among these entities are “ANO TV Novosti, parent company that owns 100% RT France”which consequently explains the freezing “RT France assets”continued the Ministry of Economy.
However, RT France continued to produce content. Because sanctions prohibit only dissemination and not production. To date, RT France continues to produce and broadcast content, which can be consulted despite the ban through a virtual private network (VPN), a service that allows you to browse the web without being blocked.
The French situation is particular because since the suspension of RT in Germany at the end of 2021, France was the only Member State of the European Union that hosted an RT subsidiary on its soil.
Source : Le JDD