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Lithuania Rules to Block 'Biased' Russian TV Channel

Maxim Stulov / Vedomosti

Lithuania is set to halt broadcasts from a Russian television channel after finding it guilty of “spreading misinformation.”

The country's Commission for Television and Radio has ruled to limit broadcast signals from the Russian state-funded television channel TV Center for one month, it said Wednesday in an online statement.

The decision follows a broadcast of the channel's flagship news program, “At the Center of Events with Anna Prokhorova,” on Jan. 27.

Part of the program focused on Lithuania's “January Events,” which saw the Soviet Union send troops to the newly independent country in a bid to restore Soviet control. Thirteen Lithuanian civilians were killed in the stand-off that followed, crushed by tanks or shot by Soviet troops.

Officials said that TV Center's take on the events broke Lithuanian laws against spreading misinformation and inciting hatred, calling the show “biased and one-sided.”

"The reportage stated that Lithuania’s withdrawal from the Soviet Union was illegal and violating international norms, that all Russian-speaking population in Lithuania was threatened to be killed, [and] that the whole modern Lithuanian statehood foundation was built on a lie," the commission said in an earlier statement on the case.  

"The [events of Jan. 13th, 1991] were presented negatively, mocking and derogatory [sic]."

The decision is set to go into effect following the approval of the Vilnius Regional Administrative Court.

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