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US Broadcaster to Cease Some Moscow Radio Services

The headquarters of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) is seen with the United States, RFE/RL and the Czech Republic flags in the foreground, in Prague, January 15, 2010.
U.S.-funded media outlet Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty says it will stop medium-wave radio broadcasting while continuing its online service later this year, to comply with a new Russian law.

Senior official Julia Ragona said Saturday that the organization is making the change November 10, when a new Russian law takes effect.

The new law will ban radio broadcasting in Russia by companies that are more than 48 percent owned by foreign individuals or legal entities.

Ragona said RFE/RL is reducing its staff by a substantial amount and said those leaving are doing so by mutual agreement, with severance packages.

She adds service plans to expand its online content and will continue broadcasting on shortwave radio.

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty operates under the authority of the U.S. Broadcasting Board of Governors, the independent federal agency responsible for all U.S. government and government sponsored, non-military, international broadcasting. Voice of America also operates under the BBG.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.