Law of the Week: Four more media outlets designated under the ‘foreign agent’ law.

Week-ending 10 September 2021

On 4 September 2021 the Russian ministry of justice designated four more media outlets as ‘foreign agents’. These were: Altair 2021 LLC, Vega 2021 LLC, Editor-in-Chief 2021 LLC, and Romashki Monolit LLC. As RFE/RL reports, these were all organisations founded by Russian journalists previously designated as individuals ‘foreign agents’ in the registry: former Open Media correspondents Maksim Glinken and Ilya Rozhdestvensky; former Open Media editor in chief Yulia Yarosh; and former Proyekt (The Project) journalists Yulia Lukyanova, Sonya Groysman, Maria Zheleznova, Olga Churakova, and Pyotr Manyakhin. On 4 September a group of protesters gathered on Moscow’s Chistoprudny Boulevard to condemn the move. On 8 September police arrested three journalists who were protesting against the use of the ‘foreign agent’ law outside the ministry of justice. The same day a number of media outlets came together to launch a campaign, ‘There are no foreign agents, there are journalists,’ in support of independent journalism in Russia and against the ‘foreign agent’ law. As The Moscow Times pointed out, the launch of the campaign was timed to coincide with International Day of Journalists’ Solidarity, celebrated each year on 8 September.


RFE/RL, 4 September 2021: Russia has branded four more media outlets as “foreign agents,” adding to the growing list of news organizations and individual journalists caught up in what critics say is an accelerated Kremlin campaign against independent media ahead of nationwide legislative elections later this month.

RFE/RL, 4 September 2021: Dozens of people gathered in central Moscow on September 4 to protest the Russian government’s recent crackdown on independent media.

RFE/RL, 6 September 2021: Well-known Russian journalist Roman Badanin, who stayed in the United States where he and his family were vacationing when his investigative group Proyekt (The Project) was shut down in Moscow in July, has started a new media outlet aimed at exposing abuses by Russian authorities.

RFE/RL, 8 September 2021: Russian police have detained three journalists as they protested outside the Justice Ministry against the government’s widening crackdown on media outlets.

The Moscow Times, 8 September 2021: Several dozen Russian news outlets have launched a campaign in support of independent journalism Wednesday amid mounting pressure on their profession in the run-up to next week’s parliamentary elections.

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