Thursday, November 24, 2016

OSCE to closely observe practical actions after EU resolution on propaganda

The Office of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media will "closely observe" practical moves that will follow the European Parliament’s resolution on counteracting propaganda by third parties, a statement of the OSCE representative, Dunja Mijatovic, said following a TASS request to comment on the situation.

"The Representative takes note of the motion for a European Parliament resolution on EU strategic communication to counteract propaganda against it by third parties," the statement said.
"Her Office will closely observe what practical actions will follow and be alert to potential freedom of the media issues in the OSCE region," it said.

"With relation to the parts of the Report by the European Parliament that deal with issues related to media from the Russian Federation, and acknowledging the important challenge created by fake news and propaganda, the Representative firmly believes that the best way to counteract this is to provide factual, neutral and independent information," the statement of the OSCE representative on freedom of the media said.

"Transparent self-regulation and media ethics are important tools of media outlets striving to uphold high professional standards. The Representative supports these efforts. She chooses an open discussion rather than confrontation, as shown by her initiative to support the dialogue between Ukrainian and Russian journalists," the statement went on.

"She welcomes the fact that the EU Resolution sees it essential for Member States, which are also OSCE participating States, to continue to actively promote respect for fundamental rights and freedoms," it added.
On Wednesday, the European Parliament adopted a resolution aimed at combating propaganda of third countries, including Russia. The resolution mentions Russian TV channel RT, Sputnik agency, Russkiy Mir (or Russian World) Foundation and the Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States, Compatriots Living Abroad and International Humanitarian Cooperation (Rossotrudnichestvo).

  • A total of 691 MPs were present at the session, 304 of whom voted in favor of the resolution, 179 voted against it while 208 abstained from voting.

The document was sharply criticized by the Russian leadership. President Vladimir Putin, in particular, said it demonstrated political degradation of ideas of democracy.

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