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RT Loses Press Creds to Cover Congress

Image: RT Loses Press Creds to Cover Congress
(Iliya Pitalev/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 30 November 2017 11:42 AM

Russia's RT news channel has been stripped of its press accreditations to cover Congress.

The Congressional Radio & Television Correspondents Gallery told RT the move was made in response to a Justice Department directive forcing RT's operating company to register as a "foreign agent."

"The rules of the Galleries state clearly that news credentials may not be issued to any applicant employed 'by any foreign government or representative thereof,''' the media group said in a letter to RT.

"Upon its registration as a foreign agent under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), RT Network became ineligible to hold news credentials."

The withdrawal of RT's accreditation by the correspondent's gallery, is effective immediately.

Stunned officials for the Kremlin-funded channel lashed out at the move, saying they had been assured RT would not be penalized.

"To all the self-righteous defenders of 'freedom of speech' — who oh-so-ardently proclaimed that FARA registration places no restrictions whatsoever on RT's journalistic work in the U.S. — withdrawal of Congressional credentials speaks much louder than empty platitudes, RT editor-in-chief, Margarita Simonyan said.

She accused the group of discrimination in picking and choosing who can cover Capitol Hill.

"To borrow from Orwell, all 'foreign agents' are equal, but [it] looks like only RT is denied congressional accreditation on the basis of FARA status, while the likes of NHK and China People's Daily carry on business as usual," Simonyan said.

RT's expulsion from press activity will likely trigger a tit-for-tat response from Moscow regarding U.S. journalists — a sign that the Cold War between Russia and the U.S. is heating up.

Last week, Russian president Vladimir Putin signed a new law that allows the designation of certain foreign media outlets as "foreign agents."

Some Russian officials have suggested that CNN, Voice of America and Radio Free Europe should be put on the list.

The Congressional Radio & Television Correspondents Gallery is serves as a liaison between Congressional offices and electronic media. An executive committee decides which media outlets receive credentials.

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Russia's RT news channel has been stripped of its press accreditation to cover Congress.
rt, russia, media, press accreditation, congress
330
2017-42-30
Thursday, 30 November 2017 11:42 AM
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