Putin Signs Law Listing International Media Outlets as ‘Foreign Agents’

Russian president says move is response to U.S. pressure on his country's media.

November 26, 2017 9:53 am
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Russian President Vladimir Putin walks along the Cathedral Square of the Kremlin before a holiday reception marking 'Russia Day' in Moscow. (Sputnik/Alexei Druzhinin/Getty)

Russian President Vladimir Putin has effectively launched a Cold War with U.S. media.

On Saturday, Putin signed a new law allowing Moscow authorities to list international media outlets as “foreign agents” — apparent retaliation for U.S. pressure on Russian media as accusations fly over possible interference during the U.S. presidential election last year.

U.S. intelligence officials reported that Russian media organizations and hackers were conscripted by the Kremlin to spread misinformation to influence American voters. That’s a charge that Putin and his government have repeatedly denied.

Never-the-less, Washington forced Russian state broadcaster RT to register a U.S.-based affiliate company as a “foreign agent,” a move that sparked outrage in Moscow.

Among the outlets that could be affected is the U.S. government-sponsored Voice of America.

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