Russian Duma May Ban US Media Access to Parliament

Russian media outlet RT
Russian state-owned television station RT logo is seen at the window of the company's office in Moscow, Russia on Oct. 27, 2017. Photo: Pavel Golovkin, AP

Russia’s State Duma will decide next week whether to prohibit all U.S. media from access to the parliament, Russian media reported.

Olga Sevastianov of the State Duma told Russian media on Friday that the lower chamber expects to enact the ban next week.

“The ban on entry to the building will affect the media not only with full, but also partial U.S. funding,” Russia’s Sputnik news agency quoted Igor Morozov, a member of the information policy committee at the Federation Council, as saying.

Their comments come after Russia’s RT television channel had its U.S. Congress media credentials revoked. RT registered last month under the U.S. Foreign Agents Registration Act, and the Executive Committee of the Congressional Radio & Television Correspondents Galleries, which controls press access to Congress, prohibits anyone employed “by any foreign government or representative thereof.”

Russian lawmakers announced they were drafting “reciprocal measures” against American media after RT was forced to register under FARA.

U.S. intelligence agencies have said that RT was a tool in the Kremlin effort to meddle in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Moscow has denied any involvement.