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CNN to Stop Broadcasting in Russia After New Law


CNN will stop broadcasting in Russia after lawmakers in Duma, the lower house of Russia’s parliament, voted unanimously Friday to back a law punishing those spreading false information about the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation.

“Dissemination of knowingly false information about the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation is punishable by a fine of 700,000 to 1.5 million rubles or up to three years in prison,” according to TASS, a major Russian state-owned news agency.

Article 207.3 “Public dissemination of deliberately false information about the use of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation” will appear in the Criminal Code (CC) of the Russian Federation. This article provides for imprisonment for up to three years or a fine of up to 1.5 million rubles. At the same time, if an official position is used in the commission of a crime or actions are committed out of mercenary motives, then a punishment of five to 10 years in prison or a fine of up to 5 million rubles is provided. If the fake information caused serious consequences, the term of imprisonment will be from 10 to 15 years.

Russian officials have accused the United States and its Western European allies of attempting to sow discord amongst the Russian people.

In response to the law, CNN and other western news organizations have suspended reporting from Russia.

Per Reuters:

“CNN will stop broadcasting in Russia while we continue to evaluate the situation and our next steps moving forward,” a spokesperson said.

News organizations including the BBC and Canadian Broadcasting Corp have also suspended reporting from Russia following the passing of the law.

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