Leading independent television channel Dozhd (Rain) was forced to suspend its operations after its website was blocked due its coverage of the war in Ukraine. Its director-general and owner, Natalya Sindeyeva, said that the decision had been made at a meeting of Dozhd’s staff members. She added was suspending its operations for an uncertain period of time due to “new conditions.” The decision came one day after its website was blocked on the orders of the Prosecutor-General’s Office. Access to its website was then restricted by the state media and internet regulator Roskomnadzor. Dozhd was alleged to have distributed what authorities called information “calling for extremist activities, violence, and premeditated false information” about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It also came after Dozhd’s chief editor, Tikhon Dzyadko, said that he and several other Dozhd journalists had left Russia over fears for their safety. The decision silenced one of the country’s last remaining major independent broadcasters critical of the government.
UPDATE: On 30 May 2022, the Tverskoy District Court of Moscow upheld the decision to block the site of the TV channel Dozhd, claiming it had reported fake information about Russian losses in Ukraine as well as harm done to the civilian population. More information: https://roskomsvoboda.org/post/tvrain-blokanuli-izza-arm-feikov/