Russian legislators are drafting a bill that would force some Western publications to register with the Russian Federation as foreign agents, as reported by Deutsche Welle, citing Andrey Isayev, the First Deputy Chairman of the United Russia faction in the State Duma.
American publications such as CNN, Radio Liberty, and Voice of America, as well as the German newspaper Deutsche Welle, would fall under the prospective law.
The bill was created in response to a new US Department of Justice requirement that Russian foreign broadcaster RT register in accordance with the US law on "foreign agents". The same registration is required for the Russian state news agency Sputnik.
RT editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan accused the US of "war" against Russian media and infringement on freedom of speech on her website.
In turn, Russia declared its readiness to respond to the situation of the "restriction" of Russian media in the United States.
Subsequently, the Russian Ministry of Justice warned Radio Liberty and its projects, the “Current Time" TV channel and "Idel.Realii" website, that it could limit their work in the Russian Federation, since the "activities can be qualified as the activities of a foreign agent".
A report released in January by the US Special Services related that Russia had interfered in the presidential election of 2016. The RT television channel, which experts consider "the main instrument of the Kremlin's international propaganda”, is named separately in this report.