MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, the European Parliament voted in favor of a resolution on countering Russian media outlets, such as the Sputnik news agency and the RT broadcaster. Out of 691 lawmakers taking part in the vote, 304 voted in favor of the resolution, 179 voted against it, and 208 abstained. Therefore, less than half of the lawmakers supported the resolution.
"Russia is the first country that really fights the ISIS [Daesh] terrorists. But of course this cannot be said. But the Russian media as RT and Sputnik say it with articles, interviews, videos, documents, evidence… And the only way [the EU] can hide the truth is to compare the Russian media to the propaganda messages of the IS to censor them," Ferrari said.
The EU parliament's resolution said that Sputnik and RT posed a danger to European unity and called for extra European Commission funding for counter-propaganda projects. It also draws parallel between Russian media and the propaganda disseminated by Daesh, a jihadist group outlawed in Russia.
Since the beginning of the war in Syria, the United States and some of its allies, including Israel, have supported the moderate Syrian opposition and called for President Bashar Assad's resignation, while Russia recognized Assad as the only legitimate Syrian authority and has been making extensive efforts to support the government of Syria in the fight against terrorism.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, commenting on the adoption of the European Parliament’s resolution on Russian media, congratulated RT and Sputnik journalists on effective work and stressed that this resolution indicated apparent degradation of the concept of democracy in the Western society. Putin also expressed hope that common sense would prevail and that there would be no actual restrictions against the Russian media.