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2019.04.17 09:13

Lithuania to consider Russian TV channel ban for hate speech

Ignas Jačauskas, BNS2019.04.17 09:13

The Radio and Television Commission of Lithuania looking into alleged violations by the Russian TV channel Russia-24 (Rossiya 24) and is to decide whether to impose broadcasting restrictions on Wednesday. The channel aired calls “to annihilate the West”.

The media watchdog will consider whether an episode of Evening with Vladimir Solovyov, aired in late November, violated Lithuanian hate speech laws.

The issue was postponed last week after the channel's representative presented documents to prove that the TV channel is broadcast from the EU, not Russia.

According to the Radio and Television Commission, the show's guest, Russian MP Vladimir Zhirinovsky, called for “annihilating the West” by starting a nuclear war.

Under Lithuania's national and European legislation, different procedures apply depending whether a TV channel is registered in the EU or in a third country. In the latter case, the rules are simpler and the commission can impose broadcasting restrictions more quickly.

Lithuania has previously banned broadcasts of several Russian TV channels for one year, the maximum sanction allowed, due to hate speech and incitement of war.