PM Under Friendly Fire for Tallinn TV Ban (4)

Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas (Postimees/Scanpix)
6/25/2014 2:00 PM
Category: Politics

A number of Reform Party MPs have criticized PM Taavi Rõivas for banning the city-operated Tallinn TV from government press conferences.

Former top judge and current chair of the Constitutional Committee, Rait Maruste (Reform Party), told Postimees today that the decision does not bode well for free speech and media freedom and that Rõivas should not orchestrate such moves by himself just because he does not like TTV.

Former Minister of Culture, Rein Lang, also a member of the ruling party, said if a television channel does not incite violence or hatred, "teach people to kill" or discriminate, it should not be forced off the air.

Rõivas banned the station from government press conferences last week, tweeting: “all journalistic outlets are welcome to the conferences, but calling Tallinn TV journalism would be an insult to journalism.”

The television channel, which will cost city taxpayers 3.4 million euros in 2014, has been criticized for having poor program quality, a scanty viewership and most recently, being a poorly disguised platform for election campaigns on the public purse and pro-Russia rhetoric.

Center Party MP Heimar Lenk has asked Parliament to comment on the PM's decision.


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