A brief recap of what’s happening in Russia-U.S. media space, and who’s become recently a foreign agent.
So I compiled a series of recent publications on this matter to make a sort of digest, that would describe a current situation.
In the beginning of December, Russia’s justice ministry has designated nine U.S.funded media outlets, including Voice of America, as “foreign agents”. The ministry also listed Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and seven of its affiliate. Russia’s broadside is likely to further sour battered U.S.-Russia relations and is part of the fallout from allegations that the Kremlin meddled in the U.S. presidential election last year. Moscow denies this kind of involvement.
RFE/RL President Thomas Kent said his organization was committed to continuing its journalistic work in Russia but was expecting “even more limitations on the work of our company”, Reuters reports.
VOA Director Amanda Bennett said in her statement the Russian Ministry of Justice has indicated the new designation will involve more “limitations” on the work of VOA in Russia.
In November, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law empowering the government to designate media outlets receiving funding from abroad as “foreign agents” and impose sanctions against them.
Russian officials called the new legislation a “symmetrical response”, as VOA News reports, to what they describe as U.S. pressure on Russian media. On November 13, RT registered in the United States under a decades-old law called the Foreign Agents Registration Act.
The new designation subjects affected U.S.-supported news outlets to the same requirements that are applied to operating in Russia foreign-funded NGOs under a 2012 law.
USA Today gives a short explanation of the situation in a one-minute long video clip.