RIA Novosti has reporters in over 45 countries providing news in 14 languages.© RIA Novosti. Mikhail Fomichev
MOSCOW, December 9 (RIA Novosti) – The Kremlin announced Monday the dissolution of RIA Novosti, the country’s major state-run news agency, amid a significant reorganization of state-owned media assets.
News agency RIA Novosti and the state-owned Voice of Russia radio will be scrapped and absorbed into a new media conglomerate called Rossiya Segodnya, according to a decree signed by President Vladimir Putin.
The move is the latest in a series of shifts in Russia’s news landscape that appear to point toward a tightening of state control in the already heavily regulated media sector.
In a separate decree published Monday, the Kremlin appointed Dmitry Kiselyov, a prominent Russian television presenter and media manager recently embroiled in a scandal over anti-gay remarks, to head Rossiya Segodnya.
Head of the presidential administration Sergei Ivanov said the changes were about saving money and making state media more effective.
“Russia has its own independent politics and strongly defends its national interests: it’s difficult to explain this to the world but we can do this, and we must do this,” Ivanov told reporters.
The direct translation of Rossiya Segodnya is Russia Today, but the new body will apparently be separate from RT, the Kremlin-funded English-language television channel originally known as Russia Today.
RT head Margarita Simonyan told Russian news website Lenta.ru on Monday that she only found out about the decree from news reports.
The changes, including legislative amendments, must be carried out by the government within three months, according to the Kremlin. Rossiya Segodnya will be located in the current RIA Novosti building in downtown Moscow, the decree said.
RIA Novosti was set up in 1941, two days after Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union, as the Soviet Information Bureau, and now has reporters in over 45 countries providing news in 14 languages.
Last month Gazprom-Media, which is closely linked to state-run gas giant Gazprom, bought control of Russian media company Profmedia from Russian billionaire Vladimir Potanin. In October, Mikhail Lesin, a former Kremlin advisor, was appointed to head Gazprom-Media.
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- mandelstam13Why?13:31, 09/12/2013Rumours say Putin was angry that Marc Bennetts left...Apparentl
- mandelstam13more...13:32, 09/12/2013Apparently he liked reading his reports on "Putin foes"
- p2o2rianWestern bias15:43, 09/12/2013Apparently the Western biased mentality of RIAN so much visible in the last two years had pi***d off someone responsible for Russian interests. At last, I must add.
- mythoslightSince "independent" in Russia mostly...15:47, 09/12/2013...means black or white, that is, pro or hysterically pro-US West bordering on being traitorous, equal or worse to western corporate media,
-or pro-Russia, BRICS and the rest of the free world, i dont see that as much of a problem.
The strangle hold of Soros-media is strong in eastern Europe, the free word must not be owned by foreign agents such as private "philanthropists" with an agenda or various NGO´s of the western regimes. Looking forward to see more of you guys wherever or in what form that may be!
- LocoIvanIndependent?01:13, 10/12/2013You would not recognize ‘independent’ if it came up and sat on your puny junk.
Conspiracists such as yourself, and your mouth breather cohorts, have been blessed with a glorious gift, in the form of Dmitry Kiselyov, from your ‘paranoid in chief’.
Here is an independent reality based assessment in regards to the ‘…decree signed by President Vladimir Putin:
‘Dmitry Kiselyov, who spent much of his weekly news program on state Rossiya television maligning homosexuality and speculating about Western-led conspiracies, was put in charge of all the resources of the former RIA Novosti, which was renamed Rossiya Segodnya (Russia Today).
The agency has been known for news coverage that at times appeared too comprehensive for the government’s comfort, including active reportage on the anti-Putin protest movement.
The appointment makes Kiselyov the chief executive in a company of 2,300 employees, removable only by Putin himself. That promotion has come as a shock to many who previously derided the pro-Kremlin pundit — who controversially suggested that the internal organs of homosexuals should be burned and buried rather than donated — as an irrelevant lackey.
Kiselyov’s conspiratorial, almost coquettish grin and over enthusiastic hand gestures have made him a recognizable staple of Russian television. But it’s his toxic cocktail of punditry and sensationalism that has gained him his reputation as one of Russia’s most famous —and reviled— news anchors.
Kiselyov has often led the attack in taking down the opposition movement, the West, homosexuals, and other groups that top the Kremlin agenda. His pugnacious punditry contrasts with that of some other anchors on state-owned channels, who often are more eager to censor issues out of the limelight than attack them head-on.
RIA Novosti’s relatively broad coverage — particularly in its foreign language services — was even on display in the report on its own dissolution that said the changes “appear to point toward a tightening of state control in the already heavily regulated media sector.”’(WPEurope;9Dec13)
RIP RIANovosti, it was fun while it lasted.
- mandelstam13nutter16:37, 09/12/2013"RIA" to be headed by a man who believes pro-EU protests in Kiev are Polish-Swedish "revenge" for the Battle of Poltava in 1709.
- Mikhail1228CNN, MSNBC and FOX News23:08, 09/12/2013I cannot watch CNN, MSNBC and Fox News anymore because it is nothing but propaganda. It is news manipulated and form fitted to US foreign policy and not truly independent reporting. I now watch RT News. So for all intents and purposes CNN should rename itself "Pravda"!!!
- Mikhail1228US Media00:52, 10/12/2013On Saturday the bodies of seven Christians are found brutally tortured and beheaded by Islamist 'rebels'in Syria. This never made it on ANY of our US media outlets. Why not??
- canobsnovosti06:28, 11/12/2013Vlad Putin probably found that novosti for a certain time had more USA news like on hollywood stars etc.. than news about Russia and most advertizers from USA. So seemed like a pro-west publication. Which was not completely wrong.
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