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Apr 3, 2021
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Latvia has declared war on information in Russian

Censorship was not limited to the prohibition of Russian-language media, the next in line is the Internet

In Latvia, they decided not to limit themselves to the prohibition of Russian-language media, now it was the turn of Internet resources.

The National Council for Electronic Media (NEPLP) has published on its official website a complete list of Internet resources, access to which has been banned since April 1. There are 272 (!) Names in the list, among which Rt.com, Ntv.ru, Rus24.tv, Teledays.net… Website Teledays.net was popular because it was possible to watch banned Russian TV channels through this service.

This is the first time that Latvian providers were ordered not only to close access to certain TV channels, but also to block Internet resources.

According to the Secretary of the Union of Journalists of Russia Timur Shafir, such actions can be regarded as the introduction of censorship in the country, despite the fact that for many years Latvia has been declaring the principles of freedom of speech, freedom of journalism and freedom of dissemination of information.

“This story is systematic and purposeful. First, the audience was cut off from the air, the broadcast of TV channels was banned. Now we see what was to be expected: they will deny access to versions of the site, to text information. In fact, before our eyes, there is a total squeezing out and liquidation of the Russian media as native speakers of the Russian language from the Baltic and then the European space with the full connivance of both the leadership of the European Union and the international community, ”

– Shafir said.

In Riga, they refer to last year’s decision NEPLP, which talks about European sanctions.

Recall that in February, 16 Russian TV channels were banned in Latvia, explaining that they could not find out the legal affiliation of these TV channels in order to clarify whether they fell under EU sanctions.

And by September 2021, the remaining few broadcasting in Russian will also be stopped by the Latvian Russian Broadcasting Service. LTV7

And if earlier the Russian-speaking residents of Latvia were not particularly worried about this, knowing that there is the Internet, now the situation has changed and one can expect that the Latvian censorship will not stop at the list of 272 names of Internet resources, but will constantly introduce more and more new bans …

At the same time, repressions continue against a group of Russian-speaking Latvian journalists, who were accused in December last year under Article 84 of the Latvian Criminal Code “Violating the EU sanctions regime”; they were searched and signed not to leave. Until now, the General Prosecutor’s Office of Latvia has refused to close these criminal cases, stating that “an investigation is underway.”

Today the only one, the last of the remaining Russian-language newspapers, is published in Latvia – Segodnya.

“Previously, it was a newspaper that was subscribed to and read in the Diet, in the presidential castle, in the embassies, and not only in Russia. We had a real chance to influence political and social processes, we could change something for the better, ”

– recalls the ex-journalist Yulia Alexandrova, who retired from journalism six years ago.

According to her, in 2004, after a sharp publication in the newspaper, the government resigned. Einarsa Repshe… But today the newspaper has ceased to be the “fourth power”, no serious issues are raised anymore, they know that they will close it immediately, so they write about tomatoes, and about pop stars, Alexandrova noted.

In Latvia, there is a systematic attack not even on the Russian-language press or television – on information in Russian.

Own. corr. FSK

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