04 December, 2017
The Russian government is looking to pass a measure that would ban American journalists from accessing the lower chamber of its Parliament, the Duma.
"It's a ban on journalists who represent American media, all American media, visiting the State Duma", RIA quoted Savastyanova as saying.
Moscow would not like to enter a ban fight with Washington, which will affect the media of both countries, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday, commenting on the decision to yank RT's Capitol Hill press credentials.
According to the letter sent by the U.S. Congress, "The Executive Committee of the Congress Radio & Television Correspondents' Galleries exercised its authority, as garnered by the rules of House of Senate, to withdraw the news credentials of the RT Network by unanimous vote on November 21, 2017". "It concerns US media because blatant attacks on foreign media, specifically Russian media, which contradict the worldwide practice of freedom of speech, are rampant in the USA", he added.
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The ban is the latest in a series of escalating restrictions the Russians are placing on some American media in response to American scrutiny on Russian state-funded outlets RT and Sputnik.
The State Duma has been working together with the Foreign Ministry on Moscow's response to the withdrawal of RT America's Capitol Hill accreditation, State Duma Vice-Speaker Pyotr Tolstoy said on Thursday.
RT "conducts strategic messaging for [the] Russian government" and "seeks to influence politics, [and] fuel discontent in the USA", the report stated. In a mirror response, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law, allowing Russian authorities to brand certain foreign media "foreign agents".
Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed legislation that empowers the government to designate media outlets receiving funding from overseas as "foreign agents" and impose sanctions against them.