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Russia to Broadcast State-Run Sputnik Radio on Banned Liberal Station’s Frequency

Margarita Simonyan

Russian state-run Sputnik Radio will take over the broadcasting frequency of Ekho Moskvy, the iconic liberal radio station that was banned last week over its coverage of the war in Ukraine.

Margarita Simonyan, editor-in-chief of Sputnik’s parent company RT, made the announcement in a Telegram post Tuesday.

"The historical injustice that the most quoted radio station in Russia still didn't have an FM frequency has been fixed," she wrote, calling the launch of Sputnik on Ekho Moskvy’s former radio frequency a “logical step.”

Starting March 9, Radio Sputnik will inherit Ekho Moskvy (Echo of Moscow)’s FM frequencies in five cities, including Moscow and St. Petersburg. 

Ekho Moskvy was taken off the air last week after Russia’s state media watchdog ordered its website blocked for spreading "deliberately false information about the actions of Russian military personnel." 

The station’s board of directors voted to liquidate the station soon after. 

Ekho Moskvy is one of at least 10 independent media outlets that Russia has blocked since authorities forbade them from reporting information about the war from non-state sources — as well as from describing it as a “war” or “invasion.”

Independent reports estimate that at least 150 journalists have fled Russia since President Vladimir Putin signed a law imposing jail terms of up to 15 years for publishing "fakes" about the Russian military.

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