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Moscow Accuses CNN Of Broadcasting Violations Amid Media Spat With U.S.


Russia's media-regulatory agency, Roskomnadzor, has accused the U.S.-based broadcaster CNN of unspecified legal violations that breach the terms of its broadcast license in Russia.

In a statement released on September 29, Roskomnadzor said it had summoned CNN officials to a meeting at which "the matter of issuing a warning to the broadcaster for violating the law on the mass media will be settled."

Roskomnadzor head Aleksandr Zharov was quoted by Russia's Interfax news agency as denying that the statement was politically motivated.

"I don't work in a political agency," Zharov was quoted as saying. "I work in a regulatory service."

Also on September 29, Russian President Vladimir Putin told a Security Council meeting that Russian media outlets abroad were facing increasing and "unacceptable" pressure.

That statement followed an accusation the previous day by the Russian Foreign Ministry that the United States was placing "unwarranted pressure" on Russia's RT television network by compelling it to register as a foreign agent.

Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accused the United States of "the selective and clearly politically motivated application of the law." She added the move would be met "with a corresponding response."

RT editor in chief Margarita Simonyan said on September 29 that such registration "may entail restrictions that will simply not allow us to work in" the United States. She said that Russia would take steps to retaliate.

Officials in the United States are conducting several investigations into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. In January, the U.S. intelligence community issued a determination Moscow orchestrated a hacking-and-propaganda campaign to influence the campaign to benefit the eventual winner of the election, Donald Trump.

Both RT and the Russian state Sputnik news agency were named in the U.S. intelligence assessment as part of the campaign and as "subservient to a corrupt political establishment" in Russia.

Russia has denied any involvement in the U.S. presidential campaign.

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