The Russian Foreign Ministry has reacted to calls for censoring RT in Serbia Russian Foreign Ministry’s spokeswoman Maria Zakharova © Sputnik / Russian Foreign Ministry

The European Parliament’s insistence that Serbia censor RT Balkans and Sputnik in order to “harmonize” with the EU is absurd, evil, and a manifestation of imperialism and colonialism, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has said.

On Wednesday, the parliament’s foreign affairs committee adopted the report by Slovakian MEP Vladimir Bilcik, criticizing Serbia for not joining the EU sanctions against Russia and demanding Belgrade shut down Russian “disinformation” outlets just as the bloc has done. The US State Department has also called for a ban on RT Balkans.

“It’s an absurd situation,” Zakharova told reporters at the daily briefing in Moscow on Thursday. “These statements speak for themselves. The West isn’t even hiding, but saying the quiet part out loud.”

The US and the EU are now openly saying that Russia, Russian culture and language, or Russian media and journalists, simply shouldn’t exist, Zakharova noted. She compared the European Parliament’s demands to calls by Ukrainian officials to “exterminate” the Russian population in Crimea and Donbass, saying they can only be described as “evil.”

“The only possible thing to say is that this is an imperialist point of view, a manifestation of neo-colonialism. Some countries, without any moral grounds, illegally arrogate to themselves the right to model the world and its development at their own discretion: who can live, speak, trade, produce, have children, and who cannot,” Zakharova told reporters. “This is a modern version of slavery, in which the colonial powers claim the right to be considered masters, and others – their slaves.”

Those who like these rules of the game have the right to play by them. We don’t. This is what we rebelled against.

The US and its allies, Zakharova argued, want Russia to have no opportunity to speak, because the very existence of Russian media threatens the Western plans for narrative manipulation.

“Our media, journalists and outlets report from the epicenters of world events, based on facts, encourage people to critically evaluate reality (as they should),” the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said. “Apparently, this goes against the plans that the American rulers have to ‘zombify’ their own population.”

American television, Zakharova noted, presents a “a one-sided, practically sterilized, filtered and adjusted picture of the world,” having reached an “ideological dead end.” Any airing of alternative viewpoints threatens to expose this media ecosystem as biased and contradictory.

RT Balkans began operations in November 2022. The EU reportedly plans to blacklist the outlet as part of its 11th package of sanctions against Russia. The bloc had banned all broadcasting activities by RT and Sputnik in March 2022, calling them “Russian propaganda” that endangered Ukraine. Major social media platforms have blocked RT accounts in the bloc, while YouTube extended the ban globally.