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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Press Body Alleges State Interferes More in TV

An international press watchdog organization has warned that Russia's electronic media is subject to increasing government interference, amid reports that a new draft law seeks to impose rigid controls on state news broadcasts. "While the newspapers are relatively free in Russia now, the electronic media is experiencing constant government interference," Johann Fritz, director of the International Press Institute, said at an opening for the organization's Russian chapter in Moscow on Tuesday. "The new democrats are reluctant to abandon the methods of the old Communists," he said. Russian television reported Tuesday that a draft law had been prepared by the government and parliament dictating what kind of information should be broadcast by the state television and radio companies and prohibiting "comment or analysis," according to Reuters. But Alexander Shpikalov, a government press spokesman, denied any such law: "The government has not proposed any such law and has no intentions of proposing one," he said. Parliament spokesmen could not be reached for comment.