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Media Wars: Ukraine bans Euronews

While EU leaders discuss how to counter Russian propaganda, a pro-Moscow Ukrainian oligarch bought the Ukrainian service of Euronews, and Kyiv decided to revoke its broadcasting license.

The European Union is set to launch its first operation in a media war with Russia, within days of EU leaders approving the campaign at a summit yesterday (19 March).

Euronews is a private media venture that has received substantial EU funding over the years.

A press release quoted by the website TeleKritika quotes the Deputy General Director of the National Telecompany of Ukraine who speaks of “legal problems” surrounding the Ukrainian service of Euronews.

The Ukrainian edition of Euronews was opened in 2009, with Ukrainian public financing. Last February, an Egyptian investor, Naguib Sawiris, bought a 53% stake in Euronews, and on 13 March it was announced that Inter Media Group, owned by Dmytro Firtash, a Ukrainian oligarch, had taken over the Ukrainian service.

The Ukrainian service has a yearly license cost of €5.5 million and a debt of €10.8 million, accumulated until Inter Media Group purchase.

In February 2013, Firtash bought Inter Media Group Ltd., which owns eight television stations, for $2.5 billion from ex-First Deputy Prime Minister Valeriy Khoroshkovskiy, who was in charge of the secret services of the then-President Viktor Yanukovich.



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