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Moscow Vows Mirror Response to German Regulator's Ban on RT DE Broadcast

RT DE - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.02.2022
German media regulator MABB has officially banned the broadcasting of RT DE in the country, claiming that the broadcast organisers had no necessary permission.
German watchdog's decision to ban RT DE from broadcasting is forcing Moscow to retaliate against German media in Russia, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.
"This step leaves us no other choice but to start implementing retaliatory measures against German media accredited in Russia, as well as Internet intermediaries who have arbitrarily and unreasonably deleted the channel's accounts from their platforms."
While the media regulator, MAAB, claims that the broadcaster had no necessary permission, Moscow emphasised that the ban was imposed despite RT DE having a license.
"This decision was made despite the fact that the media operated on the basis of a satellite broadcasting license issued by Serbia in full compliance with the European Convention on Transfrontier Television, to which Germany is also a party," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
The foreign ministry further stressed that Russia's concerns regarding the ban were explicitly ignored by Germany.
According to Russia's Deputy Permanent Representative to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Maxim Buyakevich, Germany has engaged in "media segregation on the basis of ethnicity":

"This is pure censorship," he said, adding "Germany has a dichotomy between declared principles and de facto real actions. To be honest, these actions remind me of some very alarming analogies with the well-known historical periods of that state in the context of freedom of speech and expression of opinion," the diplomat said.

Earlier in the day, MAAB banned RT DE from broadcasting in Germany.
"On February 1, 2022, the commission for registration and supervision of media regulators officially protested and banned the organization and broadcasting of the RT DE program in Germany, because there is no necessary permission for this under media law," the media regulator claimed.
The organisation and broadcasting of RT DE via live broadcasts on the Internet, through mobile applications or smart TV applications, as well as via satellites, should therefore be stopped, the regulator said added.
RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan called the German regulator’s ban on the broadcasting of RT DE Productions in Germany "pure nonsense," adding that the channel will not stop broadcasting.
Meanwhile, RT's Deputy Editor-in-Chief Anna Belkina described the decision as absurd and said RT DE Productions would appeal the ban in court. She added that RT DE will continue broadcasting from Moscow, and stressed that RT DE Productions does not broadcast in principle, but produces several programs for the RT DE channel, which has broadcasting rights in Germany and other 32 European countries.
RT DE studio - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.02.2022
Germany Bans Broadcast of RT DE
Last month, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said, following talks with his German counterpart Annalena Baerbock, that Moscow did not want to create any obstacles to the work of German journalists in Russia, but may be forced to do so if the clampdown on Russian media continues.
On 16 December, RT was finally able to launch a 24-hour news service in German, which was to broadcast live news, talk shows and documentaries from studios in Moscow and Berlin. However, on the same day, YouTube blocked the channel. Later, the head of German media regulator MABB, Eva Flecken, announced an investigation into the RT broadcaster due to the launch of a program in German allegedly without a broadcast license in Germany. At the time, Belkina said that the German legal complaints were unfounded and even absurd as they target the RT DE Productions company, not the channel itself.
The launch of RT DE has been surrounded by controversy in the European Union, with German media and politicians accusing the broadcaster of manipulations with facts targeting Germans of Russian origin. In August 2021, RT DE was refused a broadcasting license in Luxembourg after reportedly receiving a recommendation from the German authorities. In September, YouTube removed two RT DE channels without the right of recovery for alleged "violations of community rules."
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