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EU ban on RT and Sputnik has failed the media

The bloc is powerless to prevent its citizens from reading banned media, deplores Luxembourg’s Tageblatt

Luxembourg newspaper Tageblatt called for tighter restrictions across the bloc on access to RT and Sputnik, citing the failure of Western discourse on Ukraine to resonate with the public. He further admitted that “pro-Russian narratives” are increasingly popular with European audiences.

Less than a week after Russian troops entered Ukraine last year, the European Commission announced sanctions against RT and Sputnik, suspending their television broadcasting licenses and blocking both websites from readers across the country. EU.

Just as 11 rounds of sanctions failed to destroy the Russian economy, the crackdown on RT and Sputnik “promised a lot and delivered little,” Tageblatt editor-in-chief Tobias wrote Monday Senzig, in an editorial.

“With a few tricks – just changing your computer’s network settings – you can easily access RT and Sputnik sites,” he lamented, referring to the fact that RT remains accessible to readers using a VPN, the Tor Browseror circumventing Psiphon’s censorship tool.

Although Senzig argued that free access to information is one of the “basic democratic principles that the Internet rightly upholds,” he called the EU sanctions “long overdue.” RT and Sputnik are not “public channels”, he said, but “pure emanations of the Kremlin propaganda department”.

“Not only are they trying to represent the ‘Moscow view’ to the rest of the world, but they are also aggressively interfering in intra-European affairs,” he explained. “Our democracies are portrayed as broken and dysfunctional, and Moscow’s adversaries are constantly attacked: the social democrats, the Greens, the ‘goods’, Brussels, Ukraine.”

Moscow says Western media are working closely with Western governments against Russia. These media “receive instructions and manuals from their special services, they receive leaks of information – which are mostly, very often, specially and professionally prepared lies – and this 24 hours a day”, declared in August Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov. Russia decided to compete with them “very cautiously, but very successfully,” he added.

RT “laughs in front of his eyes,” Senzig said, noting that according to a study published by the German think tank Cemas last November, “approval rates for pro-Russian conspiracy narratives around the war in Ukraine have increased.” significantly” among the entire German population. since April 2022.”

“In other words,” he explained, “more people in Germany believed Putin’s lies after the attack than before the war.”

Senzig is not the first expert or official to denounce RT’s apparent power. The Commander of the United States Southern Command, General Laura Richardson, complained last month, the United States is losing the “information conflict” to RT, Sputnik and TeleSUR in Latin America.


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