March 13, 2018 / 3:00 PM / 3 months ago

UK regulator says Russian TV channel RT could lose licence over poisoning

LONDON, March 13 (Reuters) - Britain’s media regulator Ofcom said Russian broadcaster RT could lose its UK licence if Theresa May’s government determines that Moscow was behind the poisoning of a former Russian double agent in England this month.

Ofcom has an ongoing duty to check that holders of broadcast licences remain “fit and proper” to operate in Britain.

The regulator said it had written to ANO TV Novosti, the holder of RT’s UK broadcast licences, to explain that, should Britain determine there was unlawful use of force by the Russian state against the UK, it would consider this relevant to the “fit and proper” test.

Ofcom said ANO TV Novosti was financed from the budget of the Russian Federation. Britain has given President Vladimir Putin until midnight on Tuesday to explain how a nerve agent developed by the former Soviet Union was used to strike down Sergei Skripal, 66, and his daughter Yulia, 33, in the city of Salisbury. (Reporting by Kate Holton and Paul Sandle; editing by Stephen Addison)

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