Chairman of Human Rights Council hopes U.S. won’t declare Russian media “foreign agents”
MOSCOW, October 4 (RAPSI) – Chairman of Russia’s Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights Mikhail Fedotov believes that U.S. authorities will give up the idea to recognize Russian media operating in the country as “foreign agents,” the Council’s press-service told RAPSI on Wednesday.
Fedotov hopes that authorities of the United States will recall the First Amendment to the Constitution protecting freedoms of speech and press. Commenting on the proposal to subject Russia Today (RT) channel to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), he stated that: “This only shows how contagious the bad example could be and what monstrosities could result from excitement of confrontation.”
The chairman reminded that in 2014 Russian legislators copied FARA, dated back before the World War II, to create their own “foreign agents law”. He believes that both laws are unfortunate and that the Council to this day tries to make Russian version, or at least its enforcement, more adequate.
Fedotov noted that FARA specifically excludes media from the list of “foreign agents,” otherwise all foreign media financed, established or controlled by other countries would be subjected to the Act. This would mean that the same principle could be applied not only to Russia Today but also to British BBC, German ARD and ADF and other state or civil media. However, these companies are not listed as “foreign agents.”