Moldova has refused to resume Rossiya 24 broadcasts, representatives of Moldova’s Gagauz autonomy said on Monday.
Moldova’s TV authorities said the Russian channel was allegedly spreading unconfirmed rumors and using labels to portray one of the sides in Ukraine conflict in a negative light.
In July, Moldova’s Coordination Council for TV and Radio Broadcasts banned the Rossiya 24 news channel in Moldova until January 1, 2015 because its programs contradicted the republic’s TV broadcast rules and the principle of pluralism of opinion in the news about Ukraine. The same reason was used to impose fines on Moldovan television channels that retransmitted NTV, Channel One, RTR and REN TV.
The decision sparked a controversy in Moldova. A number of public organizations staged protest actions against the pressure on Russian television channels. The protesters wanted to see the ban lifted because, they said, it “violated the right of access to information".
The Gagauz authorities refused to fulfill the ban in the autonomy’s territory. They explained that Rossiya 24 was transmitted by cable operators who worked on a license issued by the autonomy’s executive committee.
The deputies of Gagauz parliament also sent a letter to the Moldovan Coordination Council for TV and Radio Broadcasts urging it to restore the Rossiya 24 broadcasts in the territory of Moldova.