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Armenia's High-Tech Ministry Initiates Talks with Russia Over Anti-Pashinyan Content on Russian TV

Armenia's High-Tech Ministry Initiates Talks with Russia Over Anti-Pashinyan Content on Russian TV

The Ministry of High-Tech Industry has officially engaged with the Russian authorities, initiating discussions between relevant departments aimed at executing mutually agreed-upon collaborations in mass telecommunications, as exclusively confirmed to The Armenian Report.

The series of events commenced on October 23 this year when the Russian program <<Куклы наследника Тутти>> in English it directly translates to 'Heir Tuti's Dolls' aired an episode featuring Armenia's Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on the 'First Channel'.

The episode, which mocked PM Pashinyan and Armenian citizens, led to widespread frustration among Armenians, urging for the shutdown of Russian channels broadcasting in Armenia. Some expressed dismay over foreign media airing on Armenian television.

Armenia's High-Tech Ministry Initiates Talks with Russia Over Anti-Pashinyan Content on Russian TV

The mockery of Pashinyan on the Russian program sparked urgent calls to remove Russian TV channels from the Armenian multiplex. The Commission of Television and Radio informed The Armenian Report that Russian channels were permitted to broadcast based on existing interstate agreements. Our readers can find the link to the agreemen here.

Tigran Hakobyan from The Commission of Television and Radio stated, 'The agreement clearly delineates norms and prohibitions to avoid content that violates our legislation, degrades our values, or interferes.' However, the commission lacks the authority to unilaterally terminate broadcasting contracts.

Hakobyan clarified, 'As an independent constitutional body, we inform relevant authorities of content violations. We forwarded our findings and opinion, along with the video, to Armenia's Ministry of High-Tech.'

Under the interstate agreements, four Russian TV channels operate in Armenia. Notably, there are no Armenian TV channels available across Russia, despite having a substantial Armenian diaspora.

The Ministry of High-Tech Industry has formally addressed the Russian side, instigating consultations between the respective departments of both countries regarding cooperation in mass telecommunications. Armenia’s Deputy Minister of High-Tech, Avet Poghosyan, confirmed that the Russian side has accepted the invitation, scheduling consultations for the latter half of December. These discussions will focus on addressing violations of clauses 4 and 5 of the Interstate Agreement, emphasizing adherence to agreed-upon obligations.

Poghosyan affirmed, 'Armenia is committed to maintaining obligations outlined in the Agreement and rectifying any violations.'

A member of the ruling 'Civil Contract’ faction, Lusine Badalyan, previously advocated for turning off Russian TV channels due to 'anti-Armenian content,' citing national security concerns. This initiative is set for discussion in the National Assembly.

Grigory Karasin, head of the Committee on International Affairs of the Russian Federal Council, expressed confidence that such initiatives wouldn't destabilize the long-standing friendship between the two nations.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan welcomed the invitation for consultations, expressing hope for a swift resolution in a cordial atmosphere.

The cooperation agreement in mass telecommunications between Armenia and Russia, active since December 30, 2020, regulates broadcasting in both countries. Notably, there are presently no active Armenian TV channels available in Russia.


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