(Ottawa) Prime Minister Justin Trudeau accuses Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre of teaming up with American billionaire Twitter owner Elon Musk to attack CBC/Radio-Canada, an institution important to Canadians.

On Sunday, Twitter decided to add the label “government-funded media” to CBC’s account, following a letter sent by the Conservative leader to the web giant.

Poilievre was quick to welcome the new designation, saying “people now know this is Trudeau propaganda, not news,” he wrote on Twitter. He then launched yet another call to cut off the CBC.

“It is really sad to see a political party attacking independent media. Mr. Poilievre claims he wants to attack the CBC without also attacking Radio-Canada. But this is entirely false. You can’t trust the Conservatives when you see that they regularly attack identity, quality independent journalism, ”said Mr. Trudeau.

“It says a lot to see that the Conservative Party has chosen to attack an important institution for many Canadians by running to see billionaires from the giants of the web in the United States,” added the Prime Minister.

CBC had opposed such a designation, which risks questioning its independence in the eyes of some. The state-owned company also published a press release on Sunday evening to set the record straight.

“Twitter’s policy defines government-funded media as instances where the government ‘may intervene to varying degrees in editorial content,’ which is clearly not the case for CBC/Radio-Canada,” argued CBC on its Twitter account.

“CBC/Radio-Canada is publicly funded through a parliamentary appropriation voted by all Members of Parliament. Its editorial independence is protected by law in the Broadcasting Act,” the statement continued.

“Furthermore, our journalism is independent and subject to our Journalistic Standards and Practices, as well as an independent complaints process through the Ombudsman,” it also said.

Unlike CBC’s, the CBC/Radio-Canada institutional account has not been given the label of government-funded media. Radio-Canada accounts do not have this mention either.

Pierre Poilievre has promised to cut off the CBC, but not Radio-Canada.

In 2021-2022, CBC/Radio-Canada received $1.2 billion from the federal government, compared to $1.4 billion the previous year. The public broadcaster also derives revenue from advertising and subscriptions.

Twitter has already affixed the controversial label to the accounts of the BBC, the British public broadcaster, and those of National Public Radio, the American public radio. The latter has also denounced this measure as an attack on its integrity in terms of editorial independence and has decided to no longer be active on the social network.

Twitter had identified these outlets as “state-affiliated,” a term typically attributed to state media outlets that relay the propaganda of an authoritarian regime — such as Russia and China.

The social media giant has changed the label yet again, opting for the term “crowd-funded media”.

Elon Musk, who is also the boss of Tesla, does not hide his contempt for the media. In recent times, questions from the press to Twitter’s communication service have been automatically emailed a turd-shaped emoticon.