Russia Geopolitical Watch – from 21 January to 27 January 2023

Russia Watch Team: Olga Schevchuk, Arnaud Huss, Nicolas Girard, Corentin DelonAnastasia K.Erwann Leyral, Emeline Palvany, led by Ilinka Léger and Enzo Padovan.

21/01/2023: The RT France Channel, owned by Russia, ceases its activities – Enzo Padovan

On 21st January, Xenia Fedorova, head of the RT France TV channel, announced the media outlet’s closing on her Twitter account. RT France is actually controlled by the RIA Novosti press agency, based in Moscow, and close to Vladimir Putin’s government. Because of the ninth sanction package approved by the European Union, in December 2022, some measures have frozen RIA Novosti’s assets within the 27 member-States. This led the French State to make a decision regarding the Russian channel operating on its territory: “RT France’s funds are frozen at the request of the General Treasury Department”, Xenia Fedorova specifies in her tweet, before adding: “Our channel can no longer continue its activity”.

This announcement didn’t go unnoticed, in Moscow: the TASS press agency released an article, reporting on the Minister of Foreign Affairs’ declarations, which condemned France for this event. During a press conference, held on 23rd January, Maria Zakharova, the Minister’s spokespon, commented on these promises: “As you sow, so shall you reap. Strong retaliation against French media is bound to follow”. According to the French newspaper Le Parisien, RT France is currently trying to unlock its bank accounts, notably in order to pay its employees’ salaries for January. 

24/01/2023: Serguey Lavrov, during his visit in Eswatini, revealed that the BRICS group was considering the creation of a currency – Emeline Palvany 

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