Russia on Wednesday ordered the closure of the Moscow bureau of Canadian radio and television CBC/Radio-Canada. and the cancellation of the accreditations and visas of its journalists, a decision described as “unacceptable” by the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
It’s the first time that Moscow veto of a Western media group since the beginning of the Russian offensive in Ukraine February 24. Russia explained that it was a response to the ban on broadcasting the channels of the Russian group RT in Canada, 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.
Spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zajarova, he said that “the CBC had become a megaphone of propaganda” against Russia and accused the Canadian government of having “adopted an openly Russophobic course”.
He also denounced Canada’s support for Ukraine before and after the Russian offensive.
The group CBC/Radio-Canada declared “deeply disappointed” by the decision of Kremlin and remembered that he had a correspondent at Moscow for 44 years and was the only Canadian media company with a permanent presence in the country.
The Radio Canadawhich employed nine people in Russia, including three foreign journalists, announced in early March that it was “temporarily” suspending the work of its reporters in Russia because of a new law that provides for prison sentences for broadcasting “misleading information about the army”in the midst of the Russian offensive in Ukraine.
© Agence France-Presse