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Outlet Releasing Kashmir Documentary Not State-Affiliated: Russian Embassy
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Outlet Releasing Kashmir Documentary Not State-Affiliated: Russian Embassy

A Berlin-based digital video organisation, Redfish Media, had tweeted the trailer for a new documentary that spoke about J&K “fast becoming a settler-colonial state”, leading to a controversy.

NEW DELHI — After a so-called Russia-backed digital outlet asserted that Kashmir was becoming the “new Palestine”, the Russian embassy in India distanced itself from the broadcast and reiterated the official position that the volatile region was a bilateral dispute between New Delhi and Islamabad, The Wire reported.

On Friday, a Berlin-based digital video organisation, Redfish Media, had tweeted the trailer for a new documentary on Jammu and Kashmir that spoke about J&K “fast becoming a settler-colonial state”. The video titled “Kashmir: Palestine in the Making’, is scheduled to be streamed on February 11 at 9:30 pm IST.

Two days later, the Russian embassy in New Delhi issued a statement, asserting that two points need to be emphasized. There has been no official response from the Indian government.

On Sunday, the Russian embassy described Twitter’s description of Redfish as affiliated to Moscow as “misleading”. The statement added that the application of the label “does not make it automatically related to any state support”.

While stating that Redfish has an independent editorial policy, the Russian embassy “hoped” that the yet-to-be aired documentary takes a “balanced” approach to the subject. “The channel functions independently with regard to its editorial policy. However, it is hoped that the complexity and historical background of this and other regional issues will be given due understanding and balanced approach, which is expected from any professional media,” the statement said.

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After the tweet announcing the Kashmir documentary was posted, Redfish had followed up with another one on Saturday to state that the documentary also includes perspectives from the “BJP in Jammu Kashmir”.

The Russian embassy also reiterated that Moscow’s traditional stance on Kashmir – non-interference in bilateral disputes – remains “unchanged”. “The solution should be found between India and Pakistan only, and it should be based on the achieved agreements, including the Simla Agreement of 1972 and the Lahore Declaration of 1999,” it added.

The Russian embassy’s brief statement comes in the backdrop of the ongoing tensions with the West over apparent military build-up on the border of Ukraine. 

Redfish had been labelled as a “Russia state-affiliated media” on Twitter since August 2020. Redfish claimed that it was “100% editorially independent & no proof otherwise, nor critique of our work challenging the mainstream & representing the oppressed”. 

The media organisations had claimed that its documentaries were produced “in collaboration with people involved in grassroots struggles worldwide to build an alternative to the ruling capitalist system”.

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