(Reuters) – The European Union’s Court of Justice on Wednesday rejected a request by the French-language unit of Russian state-controlled news network RT for a temporary reprieve from a broadcasting suspension in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“By today’s order, the president of the General Court rejects RT France’s request for interim measures,” the court, which is part of the Court of Justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg, said, adding that a final judgement would be delivered later.
The EU introduced a series of measures to suspend the broadcasting activities of some Russian state-backed media, including RT, on March 1. European media regulators have questioned the impartiality of RT over of its coverage of the Feb. 24 invasion.
The 27-nation bloc accuses Moscow of using state-controlled media to propagate what is says is disinformation about Russia’s invasion, as well as Europe’s ties with Ukraine.
The EU said on March 4 that the suspension of broadcasting can end when Russia “ceases to conduct disinformation and information manipulation activities against the EU and its member states.”
Russian officials say RT is a way for Moscow to compete with the dominance of Western global media companies that Moscow says offer a partial view of the world.
Moscow describes the war in Ukraine as a “special military operation”. Western countries say Russia launched an unprovoked invasion, which included a full-scale assault on the capital Kyiv that was repelled by fierce Ukrainian defence.
(Reporting by Sabine Siebold; editing by Jonathan Oatis)