Russia takes Voice of America radio off air

Voice of America headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Russia has pulled the U.S.-funded Voice of America radio station from the air, a senior state media official said Wednesday, calling it “spam on our airwaves.”

Dmitry Kiselyov, the head of the Rossiya Segodnya state media conglomerate, said a contract to broadcast Voice of America on AM radio would not be renewed.

“Rossiya Segodnya will not work with Voice of America,” Kiselyov said, the RIA Novosti news agency reported.

The United States has targeted Kiselyov for sanctions over his role in promoting Russia’s annexation of Crimea. He presents a highly opinionated weekly news show on state television.

“It’s as if they broadcast from the underworld. Or at least a world that no longer exists,” Kiselyov said of VOA and U.S.-funded Radio Liberty, which still broadcasts in Russia through a partner station.

“I view these stations as spam on our airwaves,” he said.