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Russia issues media freedom warning to Germany

Moscow has told Berlin it will face a reciprocal response if it expels Russian journalists

German authorities should think twice about expelling Russian journalists as such actions would result in its own correspondents being kicked out of Russia, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has warned.

Speaking on the Soloviev LIVE TV social media channel on Tuesday, Zakharova stated that Moscow had received information that Berlin is planning not to renew the visas or accreditation of Russian journalists, which would force them to leave the country. 

“If they lay a finger on Russian correspondents and decide to bring their plans to fruition, then German journalists will leave Russia,” the diplomat said, noting that Berlin had already been made aware of this through diplomatic channels.

Meanwhile, State Duma MP Anton Gorelkin has suggested that the US is responsible for pushing the German authorities to consider such action against Russian journalists, as Washington is seeking to reduce the mutual journalistic presence in Russia and Germany.

“They understand that in the context of the diverse work of media professionals [they] are losing control over German public thought and want to stop this, pushing the German authorities to take provocative actions,” the lawmaker told RIA News.

He also noted that there were more German journalists currently working in Russia than from any other European country, and claimed that because of this, there are many people in Germany who share, or are at least aware of, Moscow’s position regarding the Ukraine conflict.

According to Gorelkin, however, this is not in the geopolitical interest of the US, which only recognizes a “unipolar model of the world and its own information dictate.”

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German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius.
Germany reveals how ‘Crimean Bridge attack’ call was leaked

On Monday, German Ambassador Alexander Lambsdorff was also summoned by the Russian Foreign Ministry, where he was told that any attempts by Berlin to restrict the activities of Russian journalists would be unacceptable. 

Lambsdorff was also handed an official protest and a demand to explain the recently leaked phone conversation between two high-ranking German military officers, who could be heard discussing plans to strike Russian territory, particularly the Crimean Bridge.

The full audio of the conversation was published online last Friday by RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan. The authenticity of the recording has since been confirmed by Berlin. German Defense Ministry Boris Pistorius has suggested that the leak may have occurred due to an oversight by one senior air force officer.

Moscow has described the leaked conversation as irrefutable proof of the “direct involvement of the collective West” in the Ukraine conflict.

March 05, 2024 at 09:24PM

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