Sanctions against the Kremlin propaganda channel Rossiya Segodnya (Russia Today) are forcing the Russian state-controlled media portal Sputnik organization to move out of its rental space in Tallinn as Estonian banks do not accept Sputnik salary payments.
Rossiya Segodnya said their Tallinn landlord had sent them a termination of contract notice.
Margarita Simonyan, the head of Rossiya Segodnya, said "it doesn't help" and that Sputnik's staff will continue to work from home.
"At the end of October 2019, Estonian bank branches of foreign banks froze bank transfers paying the salaries, taxes and rent for the office space of the media agency Rossiya Segodnya," Rossiya Segodnya said in a statement. "Other Estonian banking institutions contacted by the agency also declined to do so, although for nearly four years Sputnik's money transfers to local banks have not raised questions."
It appears from the statement that Sputnik will not be able to retrieve the money left in the banks.
Sputnik's Tallinn office employs 35 people.
Dmitri Kisseljov, Director-General of Rossiya Segodnya, is on the European Union's list of personal sanctions for supporting the violation of Ukraine's territorial integrity.
Rossia Segodnya is a news agency owned an operated by the Russian government whose name translates as "Russia Today." It should not be confused with RT, the Russian government-funded Russian international television network, which operated under the name Russia Today from 2005-2009.
Editor: Helen Wright