"We urge the French authorities not to agree on this demand…The demand of French personalities to withdraw RT France's license to operate within the country's territory appears as an insidious form of censorship, as it is based not on actual fact but on a general statement coming from the United States, where nothing justified this accusation," Leruth said.
The IFJ president urged people suspicious of RT France "to watch the news and refer the biased information, if they find some, to the French [Superior Council of the Audiovisual] CSA, where the procedure is crystal clear and the rights of defense are secured.
At the same time, Leruth called on RT France to "perform their information mission with a higher attention to the ethical duties of our profession, which will demonstrate those accusations are absurd."
The IFJ president called the treatment of RT in the United States "discriminatory" and "shocking," adding that the retaliation measures introduced by the Russian authorities were well-warranted.
In November, RT America registered as a foreign agent in the United States, at the behest of the US Department of Justice, and subsequently lost its press credentials in the US Congress. The broadcaster has faced numerous accusations of attempting to influence public life in the United States under the guidance of the Kremlin. Senior Russian officials have repeatedly stressed that Russia does not interfere in other countries' internal affairs.
RT has faced criticism in France since before RT France had its first broadcast, in particular, on part of French President Emmanuel Macron, who said at a press conference in May that RT and Sputnik News Agency were spreading false information.