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Committee Proposes ERR Russian Language Channel

A special committee on Russian-language media in Estonia recommended that a new Russian-language channel, TV3, be set up next year, and said Estonian Public Broadcasting's existing media channels should be bolstered beforehand.

The committee, empowered by the Ministry of Culture, included University of Tartu professor Marju Lauristin, and Russian-speaking journalists Jelena Poverina and Viktoria Ladõnskaja. Television insiders and also the vice director general of the Internal Security Service (ISS) were present, ETV reported on Monday.

The committee made a proposal to the ministry to create a new Russian channel, with a studio in Narva. The committee said the 2.5 million euro budget previously suggested by the public broadcaster was too small.

Lauristin said the Russian-language radio station Raadio 4 has worked hard to find an audience, and there is also potential in ETV, money being the main issue.

Ladõnskaja said the biggest problem is that most projects are funded by the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA) and therefore short-term. Once the project ends, the program, journal or other media product also ends, she argued.

According to the secretary general of the ministry, Paavo Nõgene, the plan includes enhancing the Russian online news portal and Russian correspondent stations across the country.

The proposals of the committee will be presented to the government by the ministry.

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