The Russian government plans to spend R177 million (€3.3 million) on the creation of a new TV channel aimed at the Tatar population living in Crimea.

Quoting Sergei Aksyonov, who is head of the annexed region, Gazeta reports that the amount has been agreed with Dmitry Kozak, Russia’s deputy prime minister.

The new channel will aim to influence Tatars, many of whom are opposed to the annexation of what was formerly a part of Ukraine.

It will also replace the Tatar channel ATR, which was effectively forced off the air at the beginning of this month.

Former ATR employees will be welcome to work for the new channel, which could be launched in a matter of weeks, providing they agree to accept the new political reality and do not oppose the annexation.