Funded News Network Registers as Foreign Agent in US

Lawmakers started work on the amendments as a response to Washington's pressure tactics on Russian media.

In the filing, RT America's partner company said it wasn't sure how much of its funding comes from Russian Federation.

"Between a criminal case and registration [as a foreign agent], we chose the latter", Margarita Simonyan, RT's editor-in-chief said on the network's web site.

The assessment also said RT America "has positioned itself as a domestic U.S. channel and has deliberately sought to obscure any legal ties to the Russian government", but that behind the scenes, "the Kremlin staffs RT and closely supervises RT's coverage, recruiting people who can convey Russian strategic messaging due to their ideological beliefs".

The Russian ambassador to the USA had kind words to share with the Kremlin-backed outlet.

The filing comes after weeks of public pronouncements and increasing tension between Russian Federation and the USA over media outlets in the two countries.

T&R Productions, RT's content supplier, made the registration.

"Americans have a right to know who is acting in the United States to influence the US government or public on behalf of foreign principals", he said in the statement. The report said RT "conducts strategic messaging for [the] Russian government" and "seeks to influence politics, [and] fuel discontent in the U.S".

The Foreign Agents Registration Act is receiving unprecedented attention these days.

The paperwork acknowledges that RT America's parent company is financed by a foreign government, political party or other principal. "I think it's bad", Antonov was quoted as saying by Russian TV network Zvezda.

The filing goes on to state that "the production of shows remains under the independent editorial control of registrant" and that the company "respectfully disagrees that FARA should apply".

"Compelling RT to register under FARA is a bad idea".

Currently, 408 entities are registered as foreign agents with the Justice Department.

The Russian Foreign Ministry previously said that Russia would retaliate against American media if RT were forced to register as a foreign agent, though it has not indicated how.

The RT said it complied with the US demand to make the filing by November 13 or their employees could face imprisonment and have their assets seized. "Former MSNBC host Ed Schultz joined the network back in January".

RT was singled out in a January intelligence community report for the impact it may have had on the 2016 US election.

The Justice Department demanded in September that the company providing service to RT America on USA soil register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). They range from the Aruba Tourism Authority to China's Xinmin Evening News.

Vanessa Coleman

Comments