Latvia’s national media council bans broadcasting of all Russian TV channels

Latvia's national media council bans broadcasting of all Russian TV channels Credit: Creative Commons

Latvia has reportedly banned the broadcasting of all Russian TV channels, with the decision causing controversy and great debate between Latvians.

Latvia’s politicians have decided that the best way to reach the Russian-speaking audience living in Latvia is to transfer the content of Latvian Television (LTV) and Latvian Radio to commercial channels.

The decision justified by the war in Ukraine is believed to be temporary with the public media concerned that the decision could lead to potential problems with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and other contracts that would weaken their position, as reported by rus lsm lv.

An amendment has been made to the Law on Support to the Civil Population of Ukraine stipulating that news and programmes produced by Latvian public media should be broadcast free of charge on cable TV.

This was agreed by the Development Committee, formed from representatives of the coalition parties, which is looking for a solution to the security of the information space.

“In order to make a decision, we need to do our homework, to do analytical work that could help answer questions related both to the process itself, such as copyright.”

“As well as questions related to the impact on the media environment and the impact on the audience if such a move is made,” said Vita Anda Therauda, a spokesperson for the committee.

According to Minister of Culture Nauris Puntulis, content created in Latvian language could also be transferred to commercial media through translation or subtitling.

Boris Tsilevich (Concord), a member of the parliamentary committee on human rights and public affairs, stated:

“If we want to win an audience, we must offer what is interesting to that audience and not be guided by those dogmatic notions that everything must be in Latvian because the state language is Latvian.”

“This is totally inconsistent with international practices and standards, and in the end, it is simply in the interests of Russian propaganda.”

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Joshua Manning

Originally from the UK, Joshua is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at