Kremlin-backed Sputnik news agency opens Estonian branch

ABP – ww reports.

TALLINN – The Kremlin-financed Russian news agency Sputnik, has launched Estonian and Russian-language news portals in Estonia.

This is the second Sputnik agency to open in the Baltic states within the last two weeks. The first, stationed in Latvia, opened on February 12, 2016.

Sputnik’s journalists and editors located in Tallinn will provide coverage of international and local events and offer opinions on current affairs, based on the Kremlin’s perspective.

Sputnik said its new Estonian website will carry a variety of multimedia content, including infographics, video, photo reports, live streams and online polls, analysis, exclusive interviews, plus expert reviews.

Sputnik is part of the Russian state-owned news network Rossiya Segodnya (English: Russia Today), led by Dmitry Kiselyov.

Kiselyov is one of the persons put on the European Union’s sanctions list for being a “central figure of government (Kremlin) propaganda, who supports the deployment of Russian forces in Ukraine.”

In Latvia, authorities are already considering imposing sanctions on Sputnik.

“The launch of the Latvian version of Sputnik once again demonstrates Russia’s attempts to disseminate its propaganda in Latvia’s information space,” said Latvian Security Police spokeswoman, Liga Petersone following the opening of the Latvian outlet.

Rossiya Segodnya is considered the main propaganda tool of the Kremlin aimed at the West.

Sputnik runs round-the-clock newswires in English, Arabic, Spanish and Chinese.

The opening of the Tallinn agency coincides with the 98th anniversary of Estonia’s independence, which is celebrated on February 24.

The brainchild of the Russian government’s propaganda chief, Dmitri Kiselyov, Sputnik says its aim is to challenge what it regards as the news orthodoxies of the “unipolar” American-led world media, SCOTLAND also  become the target of a Russian invasion – with Moscow TV station Sputnik News set to make a landing in the capital city.

The opening of a first British hub for the news service – a state mouthpiece forVladimir Putin’s regime – in Edinburgh is being viewed as a subtle show of force by his government.

Russian watchers are deeply sceptical about the new organisation, the latest incarnation of Soviet-era news agency RIA Novosti and Cold War broadcaster Radio Moscow, Russia watchers also warned viewers to be sceptical about Sputnik – in particular their coverage of the Kremlin’s harsh policies on gay rights and Russia’s role in Ukraine’s bitter civil war.

Sputnik, they believe, is a crude attempt to act as apologist for Kremlin policies on gay rights and Ukraine while cynically encouraging alternative views of Western powers, such as those of some Scottish nationalists.

Its decision to open up shop in Edinburgh rather than London has raised eyebrows. “This is not good news for Scotland,” said one person familiar with the way the new agency operates. “Scottish politicians in particular should keep their distance.”

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Getty images – ABP

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