Alex Salmond rules out return to Kremlin-backed TV channel RT

Alex Salmond has ruled out returning to the Kremlin-backed television station RT even if it is allowed to broadcast again in the UK.

Former first minister Alex Salmond
Former first minister Alex Salmond

The former first minister said he would not go back to broadcasting on the channel but was working on “a range of new TV programmes” in London.

The Alex Salmond Show aired on RT from 2017 until this year, when it was suspended by Mr Salmond due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Media regulator Ofcom later revoked the channel’s licence to broadcast in the UK.

Mr Salmond made the comments as his Alba Party launched its manifesto in Dundee ahead of the local elections next month.

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He said the party, which is standing 111 council candidates, was poised for a “political breakthrough”.

It has pledged to give “priority and urgency” to Scottish independence as well as outlining measures to tackle the cost-of-living crisis.

It also wants proposed reforms to the Gender Recognition Act to be “placed on pause” while a Citizens’ Assembly is held.

Mr Salmond told journalists he felt no regret at having broadcast on RT, which has often been described as an outlet for Russian propaganda.

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He said: “I don't accept the suggestion that making an independently-produced television programme, broadcast on an Ofcom-regulated station, implies support for the Russian invasion of Ukraine.”

He said Alba had condemned Russia’s actions “on the day of the invasion”, adding: “I've opposed illegal invasions for the last 30 years, and this one I’ll treat no differently.

“It’s an illegal invasion. It has to be opposed. The people of Ukraine have to be supported and the invasion, Russia’s actions, should be condemned.

“As far as the programme is concerned, I suspended it on the day of the admission, and on March 5, I indicated publicly that that decision was final.”

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Mr Salmond said he supported the sanctions being imposed on Russia.

He said he is not standing as a council candidate himself “as I am working in London which would not be compatible with being a local councillor in Scotland”.

Alba failed to get any MSPs elected at the Holyrood election last year.

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