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Moscow Threatens to Expel U.S. Journalists Over YouTube Block

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova. Donat Sorokin / TASS

Russia's Foreign Ministry on Thursday threatened to expel a U.S. journalist or U.S. media outlet if YouTube again blocks broadcasts of its weekly press briefings.

"A few of my briefings were blocked. What we did is we went ahead and said: 'if you block a briefing one more time, one journalist or one U.S. outlet will go home'," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a roundtable discussion.

She also took aim at Polish media, "taking into account that all this is overseen by a lady with Polish citizenship," referring to the platform's CEO Susan Wojcicki, a U.S. citizen of Polish descent.

"Given Poland's position [towards Russia], we may not stop at U.S." media, Zakharova added in quotes carried by Russian news agencies.

Since Russia began its military operation in Ukraine on Feb. 24, YouTube has deleted the channels of many pro-Kremlin media, while state media outlet RT and state-controlled Sputnik were blocked in most Western countries. 

Last week, Russia said it was closing the Moscow offices of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in retaliation for Ottawa's banning of RT.

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