MOSCOW (Reuters) -Russian radio station Ekho Moskvy was taken off air on Tuesday, its editor Alexei Venediktov said, in a blow to one of the few remaining liberal media that the Kremlin has tolerated until now.
The move came shortly after the prosecutor general’s office demanded that access be restricted to Ekho Moskvy and the TV Rain online news channel because of their coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The demand was prompted by their websites’ “targeted and systematic posting … of information calling for extremist activities, violence and deliberately false information about the actions of Russian forces as part of a special operation” in Ukraine, the prosecutor’s office said.
Russia rejects the term invasion, says its actions are not designed to occupy territory but to destroy Ukraine’s military capabilities and capture what it regards as dangerous nationalists – a pretext rejected by Ukraine and the West as baseless propaganda.
Venediktov, one of Russia’s best known journalists, wrote on his Telegram social media channel: “Ekho Moskvy has been taken off air.”
On its website, which went down for a short time but later was accessible again, Ekho Moskvy said the accusations against it were baseless and offensive, and it would fight them in the courts.
(Reporting by Reuters; Editing by Catherine Evans and Gareth Jones)