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Disinformation: Russia

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN 132252, tabled on 1 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the oral contribution of the Prime Minister, Official Report, Thursday 24 February 2022, volume 709, what plans she has to address Russian state-sponsored misinformation.

Answered on

7 March 2022

The Government takes the issue of disinformation very seriously. The Counter Disinformation Unit is working closely with the new Government Information Cell (GIC) to identify and counter Russian disinformation targeted at UK and international audiences. The GIC brings together expertise from across government including - but not limited to - FCDO, MoD, DCMS and CO experts in assessment and analysis, disinformation, and behaviour and attitudinal change.

We have been working closely with the major social media platforms to monitor and share information as the situation in Ukraine develops. We have made clear the seriousness of the current situation and the importance of cooperating at speed on countering these threats including swiftly removing disinformation and coordinated inauthentic or manipulated behaviour which is against their terms of service and promoting authoritative content.

As the Secretary of State set out in her statement to Parliament on 3 March, RT's broadcast news channel has been shut down on Freeview, Freesat and Sky. The Government welcomes the action Youtube has taken to prevent access to RT in the UK and the Secretary of State has written to other major platforms, including Meta and TikTok on this subject asking them to do all they can in preventing access to RT in the UK.

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