Lithuania suspends Russian channel TVCI for 6 months
The six-month ban on retransmission of the Russian television channel TVCI over content inciting to war and hatred is taking effect on Monday.
The Lithuanian Radio and Television Commission's (LRTK) decision to impose the ban was made two weeks ago after finding repeated violations in the Russian-registered TVCI, also stating that the earlier sanctions had been fruitless.
The latest sanction was also approved by the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court.
According to the media watchdog, comments made by Vladimir Zhirinovsky on the Right to Know show broadcast on TVCI on June 10 incited to hatred among nations and instigated war. The Russian lawmaker spoke about an occupation of Ukraine and Transnistria, the breakaway region of Moldova.
A TVCI representative was present at the LRTK meeting, but he did not acknowledge the violations.
Lithuania started to restrict the broadcasting of Russian channels in the country after Russia in 2014 annexed Crimea and began to support separatists in eastern Ukraine.
The retransmission of TVCI was earlier this year suspended for a month after LRTK established that a program on the channel covering the events of January 13, 1991 in Vilnius provided defamatory information about Lithuania.
TVCI is owned by TV Tsentr, a state-run Russian TV company.