British regulator launches probe of Russian TV channel
Ofcom to consider complaint against ‘anti-Turkish’ broadcast last month.
LONDON (AA) – Britain’s media regulator Ofcom is investigating whether the Russian-owned RT network broke broadcast rules by criticizing the Turkish government without offering opposing views.
The regulator said it had received one complaint about the English-language channel’s “Going Underground” program aired this March 5 and 23.
The broadcasts contained criticisms of Turkish government policies and treatment of its Kurdish population.
One segment in the March 5 program showed a guest alleging Turkey was “carrying out a genocidal war” against the Kurdish population, but did not offer an opposing view.
British media rules require U.K.-based broadcasters like RT to show “due impartiality” in their news programs.
An Ofcom spokesman told Anadolu Agency: “We’re investigating whether the program’s discussions regarding the actions and the policies of the Turkish government breached our impartiality rules.”
RT has breached Ofcom rules on 14 occasions in the past. The most recent four breaches in September 2015 resulted in RT being ordered to broadcast a statement written by the regulator.
The network, formerly known as Russia Today, is funded by the Russian government and started broadcasting in 2005.