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    Russian watchdog recommends extending 2x2 TV channel's license

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    The Russian federal broadcasting commission recommended Wednesday extending the license of the 2x2 TV channel, which shows cartoons aimed at a young adult audience and is facing charges of promoting extremism.

    MOSCOW, September 24 (RIA Novosti) - The Russian federal broadcasting commission recommended Wednesday extending the license of the 2x2 TV channel, which shows cartoons aimed at a young adult audience and is facing charges of promoting extremism.

    "It was a unanimous decision to recommend extending the license," said Mikhail Seslavinsky, the head of the Federal Agency for Print and Mass Media.

    Sergei Sitnikov, the broadcasting watchdog chief, told journalists that the commission demanded the TV channel bring its programs into line with its declared concept, which he said included a variety of programming, such as movies and series.

    In early September, Russian prosecutors upheld a complaint from a religious group against the adult-oriented cartoon network for "overt propaganda of homosexuality and pedophilia." The 2x2 company was issued with a warning and the case was referred to court.

    2x2 broadcasts South Park, The Simpsons, Family Guy and the Cute Little Dead Girl.

    The channel said that as of next week it would suspend 12 cartoon shows, including South Park and The Simpsons, until the situation was resolved.

    The channel faced similar accusations in March 2008, when Russian Protestant leaders submitted a request to the Prosecutor General's Office asking for the channel's license to be revoked, saying it "promotes immorality and violence."

    In February 2008, Rossvyazokhrankultura, a regulatory body for television in Russia, issued warnings to the channel over the Happy Tree Friends and The Adventures of Big Jeff cartoon series, recommending that it cease broadcasting them to avoid legal problems.

    2x2 filed on Friday a suit at an arbitration court against allegations of promoting "extremism."

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