From FNC’s Justin Fishel…
All of the below is on the record from State Department Spokesman Marie Harf:
• We condemn the Russian Government’s recent decision to block continued Voice of America broadcasting in Russia.
• In the last year, the Russian Government has passed laws imposing unprecedented censorship and restrictions on media and online publications. In the past few months alone it has blocked independent websites and blogs, turned wire service Ria Novosti into a propaganda tool, denied visas and accreditation to foreign journalists, and forced leadership changes at several media outlets that dared to challenge Kremlin policies.
• The United States supports the rights of all people, including Russians, to exercise their right to free speech regardless of their political views. This right is enshrined in the Russian Constitution as well as in international agreements to which Russia is a party.
• In recent months Russia has spoken out to defend free speech in other countries. We call on the Russian government to drop this obvious double standard and to allow the same access to information for its citizens that it insists other nations provide.