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Russian media regulator probes BBC quoting IS leader

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MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s media regulator says it’s checking if the BBC violated Russian law when it quoted the leader of the Islamic State group.

Communications oversight agency Roscomnadzor said Thursday that BBC reports with statements by IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi “conveyed ideological principles of international terrorist organizations.”

The agency says it’s evaluating whether the segments complied with Russia’s anti-extremism law. The BBC has insisted it strictly abides by Russian laws.

The Russian regulator launched a review of BBC operations last month after British broadcasting regulator Ofcom said Kremlin-funded television channel RT broke impartiality rules in its coverage of the poisoning of a Russian ex-spy in England.

Ofcom said it was considering “statutory sanctions” against RT that could range from a fine to a license suspension.

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