The National Electronic Media Council of Latvia (NEPLP) has decided to revoke the broadcasting license of TV Rain, a Russian TV channel. In Russia, TV Rain has been labeled a foreign agent.
“Having assessed the totality of violations, NEPLP is convinced that the management of TV Rain does not understand and is not aware of the significance and seriousness of the violations, so it cannot operate in Latvia,” said Council head Ivars Abolins.
According to him, the move was caused by the threat to national security. The channel is to stop broadcasting on December 8, 2022. TVRain’s YouTube broadcasts should also be blocked in Latvia. NEPLP will ask YouTube to geo-block TV Rain so that the channel's content is not available in Latvia, Abolins said.
The channel's anchor, Anna Mongait, commented on the regulator's decision:
“Latvia has revoked TV Rain's license. We’ll continue to work, we’ll remain on YouTube, but we will lose some of our cable networks. But I'd like to say that every single hater who has been lambasting TV Rain these days, accusing us of a crime we didn't commit, has had a hand in what's going on.”
A few days earlier, TV Rain fired its anchor Alexei Korostelev because of his phrase about helping the Russian military, uttered in a live broadcast.
“We made the decision to stop working with Alexei Korostelev as of today. This is a very difficult decision for us, but the management of TV Rain considers it the only possible one,” the channel's team said.
Earlier, the NEPLP fined TV Rain 10,000 euros. According to Delfi, the fine was imposed because the TV channel labeled the occupied Crimea as part of Russia and called the Russian army “our army.”