According to RT itself, Ruptly GmbH (RT video agency) and RT DE Productions GmbH (RT's Website in German) received notices on February 26 about the closure of accounts in Сommerzbank from May 31 this year. This happened a month after the announcement of the upcoming launch of Ruptly’s German TV channel scheduled for December 2021.
Ruptly has sent dozens of requests to other German banks, as well as to European banks with branches in Germany, asking to open an account. But none of them agreed.
"Most requests received rejection letters, the rest were ignored," RT said in a statement.
"We have reason to believe that this is a campaign against RT in Germany, which, in fact, boils down to a financial embargo," said Dinara Toktosunova, head of the RT’s German TV channel.
The situation has escalated to the Russian Foreign Ministry. The Ministry’s spokesperson, Maria Zakharova, said that “hostile attitude of foreign partners towards the media is unacceptable".
"We consider closing the accounts of Russian news agencies an element of political pressure on journalists and an obvious violation of Germany's obligations to ensure freedom of speech and media," she said at a briefing.
She added that if RT accounts are not opened, Moscow will take retaliatory measures against the German media.