Russia mulls ban on access of all U.S. media to State Duma

The State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation

MOSCOW, Dec. 1 (Xinhua) — A decree on banning the entry for all media outlets from the United States to the Russian State Duma lower parliament house may take effect on Dec 6, Chairperson of the Duma’s Rules and Regulations Committee Olga Savastyanova said Friday.

It is in response to the U.S. move to withdraw press accreditation for the American arm of Russian television station RT.

Savostyanovan said the committee intends to propose the measure Monday, and submit it for approval at the house plenary session scheduled for Wednesday.

“This decision will come into effect from the moment the State Duma takes a decision,” Savostyanova added.

The committee would also recommend regional parliaments to ban entry of U.S. journalists, she said.

On Wednesday, RT America was stripped of its press credentials for working in the Capitol Hill due to its registration as a foreign agent in the United States. RT America said the registration was done at the demand of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Washington has been accusing some Russian media, including state-sponsored RT and Sputnik, of influencing public opinion during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, while Moscow says they are being oppressed by U.S. authorities.

Russian President Vladimir Putin last week signed into law a bill requiring foreign-funded media outlets in Russia to register as “foreign agents,” a move thought to restrict foreign media’s activities in Russia.

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