WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland’s broadcasting regulators extended the license of Discovery Inc.-owned TVN24 at the last moment Wednesday but also adopted a resolution to pressure the American company to sell its majority stake in the TV news channel, which airs coverage that is critical of Poland’s government.
The National Broadcasting Council, known by the Polish acronym KRRiT, had delayed the renewal of TVN24’s license for almost two years. The independent television channel is watched by millions of people daily in Poland. Its current license expires on Sunday.
The ruling Law and Justice party has at times denounced the channel. It is also trying to push a law through parliament to ban non-European ownership of broadcasters, a move viewed as an effort to curb media freedom in Poland. However, the party cannot be sure of winning enough votes for the law.
Before extending TVN24′s license, the council unanimously adopted a resolution stating that says owners from outside Europe cannot hold more than a 49% stake in radio or TV stations in Poland.