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Seven new investigations into RT news channel

Ofcom has today opened seven new investigations into the output of the Moscow-based RT news channel.

Launching the investigations, the UK broadcast regulator said that the channel's compliance record hadn't been "materially out of line with other broadcasters". However, since the events in Salisbury, Ofcom saw an increase in the number of programmes that potentially violated UK broadcasting rules.

It is investigating two episodes of Sputnik, shown on 17/03/2018 and 07/04/2018, two episodes of Crosstalk on 13/04/2018 and 16/04/2018, news bulletins on 18/03/2018 and 30/03/2018 and an episode of Worlds Apart with Oksana Boyto on 01/04/2018 due to potential breaches of UK 'due impartially' rules that broadcasters have to adhere to.

Ofcom said it would announce the outcome of these investigations "as soon as possible". It is also reviewing whether TV Novosti, the company that operates RT, is a 'fit and proper' licence holder.

The investigations could affect RT's ability to broadcast in the UK and beyond, as the broadcaster holds Ofcom licences for both RT's UK and Europe services.