The UK branch of the Spanish bank BBVA has blocked the transfer of ad revenues received by RT (Russia Today) in the UK.
Quoting the broadcaster, Kommersant reports that the bank explained that a transaction may have had an indirect relationship with Dmitry Kiselyov, who is included on the EU sanctions list.
Kiselyov is a well-known and controversial Russian journalist. He is head of the recently established state owned international news agency Rossiya Segodnya and also deputy director of the state broadcaster VGTRK.
In July, Barclays bank froze Rossiya Segodnya’s account without providing any explanation.
Margarita Simonyan, who is editor in chief of Rossiya Segodnya as well as of Russia Today, has criticised the latest move. She denied there is any connection between the channel and the news agency, underlining that the agency is not under sanctions.
Simonyan also stressed the popularity of Russia Today in the UK, where it has three times the audience of Fox News and double that of Euronews.
Ad sales for RT in the UK are undertaken by Axiom Media.