07 december, 2017

The draft Law on prohibiting Russian propaganda in Moldova will be considered in the Moldovan Parliament this week, the ruling Democratic Party announced in its press release on Wednesday.

The document said that the bill on amending the Code of Television and Radio Broadcasting stipulates the introduction of "a mechanism of ensuring the information security of the State".

"The legislative initiative, signed by lawmakers from the Democratic Party and the European People's Party of Moldova, is aimed at ensuring the security of the country's information area by restricting the transmission and retransmission in Moldova of information-analytical, political and military programs from the states that have not ratified the European Convention on Transfrontier Television. The bill is aimed to struggle against propaganda and manipulations from abroad", said the DP press release.

The Democrats emphasized that their initiative is aimed "exclusively at restricting information-analytical programs and will not influence on the retransmission of entertainment and the like programs cast by foreign television channels".

At its Wednesday's working meeting, the parliamentary Standing Committee for Culture, Education, Sciences, Youth, Sports and the Mass Media gave its positive conclusion on this Democratic bill.

"Foreign propaganda and manipulations from the outside threaten our national security", stated Democrat Sergiu Sirbu, a former Communist. "Such a threat exists not only in Moldova but also in Ukraine, the European Union and the United States. By no later than next February, all the television channels re-transmitting foreign news and political debates must exclude them from their casting".

At discussing the Democratic bill, strong objections followed from MP Maria Ciobanu of the Liberal Democratic Party and from the Socialists who regarded it as an overt encroachment on the freedom of speech, freedom of opinion, and freedom of choosing sources of information.

"If you have made up your mind to adopt such a law, then cross out from the Constitution such notions as freedom of speech and freedom of the media. Exclude everything you don't like and leave only what you regard to be correct", stated Socialist Vlad Batrincea. For violation of the Democrats-demanded restrictions, the bill stipulates fines of 40,000 to 70,000 lei, for repeated violations - 100,000 lei. The utmost punishment will be revocation of broadcasting licenses.

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