Washington, DC. The Press office of the US House of Representatives, has denied accreditation to Sputnik News in an amazing display of Orwellian censorship by the nation whose first amendment is the right to freedom of speech.
The Congressional Periodical Press Gallery committee, which deals with media accreditation, has refused to provide the Russian news agency Sputnik with a press pass, Radio Liberty has reported.
The Senate Periodical Press Gallery Director, Justin Wilson, stressed that accreditation is not given to media whose work is paid for by a state. It was unclear if this was a new policy or rather an interpretation of an old policy, as there are a large number of nations whose press services are ran directly by their own governments.
Wilson also noted that the news agency was welcome to appeal against this decision.
Sputnik correspondent Andrew Feinberg, Sputnik’s White House correspondent, called the situation “absurd” and said that he plans to challenge the position of the Congressional Press Gallery in the American court system. The American Civil Liberties Union is looking into the case as is Judicial Watch, a US watchdog NGO that monitors court decisions and their validity nationwide.
Sputnik is part of the Russian state media group “Russia Today”. It is engaged in covering events abroad. Neocon Obama era American officials in the US have repeatedly accused Sputnik of spreading Russian propaganda and of trying to intervene in the political process of other countries.