Russia To Retaliate After RT Accounts Frozen In France: Reports
Shafaq News/ Moscow will retaliate against French media in Russia after the bank accounts of RT France, the French arm of its state broadcaster, were frozen, Russian news agencies reported Saturday.
"The blocking of RT France accounts will lead to retaliatory measures against the French media in Russia," the TASS and RIA Novosti news agencies quoted an anonymous foreign ministry source as saying. The measures "will be remembered", the source said, accusing Paris of "terrorising Russian journalists."
On Friday, the unions of RT France -- already banned from broadcasting -- said their accounts were frozen in the country.
The French finance ministry told AFP that the assets of the chain had been frozen in compliance with the most recent EU sanctions, and not on Paris’s initiative.
Unlike the initial sanctions decided after Moscow launched its Ukraine offensive, fresh EU measures adopted in December provided for an "asset freeze" of targeted entities, the same ministry source said.
Among those entities is "ANO TV Novosti, a parent company holding 100 percent of RT France", the source said, explaining the decision.
But an RT France trade union representative countered this, saying the order came directly from the French treasury.
"We received a letter from our bank on January 18 which said that our bank accounts were frozen at the request of the general management of the treasury," the representative told AFP.
In July, the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg threw out an appeal from RT France against a broadcast ban introduced by the EU shortly after the Kremlin sent troops to Ukraine.
Until a German ban in late 2021, France was the only EU country to host an RT branch.
Most Western media outlets are off-air in Russia and have seen their websites banned.