In an interview with RT, which has had a series of run ins with the regulator, Alexander Lebedev said: “I don’t seriously think that, for example, they could come harsher against you. It would really portray the British system – ‘the government against the media’ – in a wrong way.
“The British system, which really looks like a cradle of free speech, could tolerate things like that (RT). So I was really smiling when I bumped into that you were being rigorously reprimanded by Ofcom, and think that the compromise would be found.”
Some media commentators regard RT as a mouthpiece for President Putin. In November Ofcom threatened the channel, which has Freeview distribution, with statutory sanctions after the Kremlin-backed news channel breached broadcasting regulations on impartiality with its coverage of the Ukraine crisis.
RT launched a service dedicated specifically to the UK at the end of October.