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BBC suspends reporting in Russia after introduction of new law

The BBC will temporarily suspend the work of all its journalists in Russia in the wake of a new law that could jail anyone found to be intentionally spreading 'fake' news.

Update:
BBC suspends reporting in Russia after introduction of new law
ALEXANDER NEMENOVAFP

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) said on Friday that it would temporarily suspend the work of all its journalists and support staff in Russia following the introduction of a new law that could jail anyone found to be intentionally spreading 'fake' news.

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Independent reporting 'criminalised'

Tim Davie, the director general of the BBC, said in a statement the legislation appeared to criminalise the process of independent journalism. "It leaves us no other option than to temporarily suspend the work of all BBC News journalists and their support staff within the Russian Federation while we assess the full implications of this unwelcome development," he said. "The safety of our staff is paramount and we are not prepared to expose them to the risk of criminal prosecution simply for doing their jobs. I would like to pay tribute to all of them, for their bravery, determination and professionalism".

He said the BBC News service in Russian would continue to operate from outside Russia. "We remain committed to making accurate, independent information available to audiences around the world - including the millions of Russians who use our news services. Our journalists in Ukraine and around the world will continue to report on the invasion of Ukraine," Davie concluded.

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