9 Nov 2017 15:10

Moscow may respond in kind to restrictions on Russian media abroad but should not stoop to double standards - Foreign Ministry

(name of Kozhin adjusted in para 1 of news item issued at 2.36 p.m.)

MOSCOW. Nov 9 (Interfax) - Russian law allows for the possibility of a symmetrical response with respect to journalists of countries which impose restrictions on Russian media outlets, but Moscow should not lower itself to double standards, the deputy director of the Russian Foreign Ministry's press service, Alexander Kozhin, said.

"Some provisions of our laws, such as Article 55 of the Law on Media, and Clause 23 of the Rules of Accreditation of Foreign Journalists, allow for the possibility of counter-restrictions on journalists of countries which impose special restrictions on the professional activity of Russian media," Kozhin said at a meeting of the Federation Council Commission on Information Policy and Media Relations on Thursday.

"We cannot lower ourselves to double standards; we adhere to legal instruments," Kozhin said.

More than 900 representatives of over 300 foreign media outlets are currently working in Russia, he said. Russian laws "have never been used to infringe on the rights of foreign media outlets," he said.

"One may say that U.S. laws have been applied to the RT channel in a disproportionate manner," Kozhin said. He noted that countermeasures might be put into place exclusively for countries that restrict Russian media, not all Western media.