Russia on Wednesday ordered the closure of the Moscow office of Canadian radio TV CBC/Radio-Canada and the annulment of its journalists’ accreditations and visas, a decision described as “unacceptable” by the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
This is the first time Moscow vetoed by a western media group since the start of the Russian offensive in Ukraine on February 24. Russia explained that it was in response to the ban on broadcasting channels of the Russian group RT in Canada, which was decided in mid-March.
“By his decision to expel the Canadian media from Moscow, Putin is trying to prevent them from reporting the facts and this is unacceptable.”said Trudeau On Twitter. “Journalists must be able to work safely, without censorship, intimidation or interference”he added.
The spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Maria Zajarova, said “the CBC had become a propaganda megaphone” against Russia and accused the Canadian government of “took an overtly Russophobic course”.
He also denounced Canada’s support for Ukraine before and after the Russian offensive.
The group CBC/Radio Canada stated: “deeply disappointed” by decision of kremlin and remembered that he had a correspondent Moscow for 44 years and was the only Canadian media company with a permanent presence in the country.
The CBCthat employed nine people in Russia, including three foreign journalists, announced in early March that it would “temporarily suspend” the work of its reporters in Russia over a new law imposing prison terms for distributing “misleading information about the military”in full Russian offensive in Ukraine.
© Agence France Presse