Alex Salmond faces call to be expelled from Privy Council over links to Russian-state broadcaster

A top MP has been urged to expel Alex Salmond from a body advising the Queen.

Scottish Lib Dem leader Alex Cole-Hamilton said Salmond should be kicked out the Privy Council for fronting a show on Kremlin-backed RT.

In a letter to MP Mark Spencer, Lord President of the Privy Council, Cole Hamilton said Salmond’s link to a “hostile” state makes him unfit for the office.

Russia has become an international pariah over its invasion of Ukraine, with the US, the UK and other major countries criticising the action.

However, the spotlight is also on Salmond, who presents a self-titled show on Kremlin backed RT, which is seen as a propaganda outfit.

Cole-Hamiton wrote: “As you will know, for the past 5 years Mr Salmond has been hosting ‘The Alex Salmond Show’ – a political chat show, on Russian state broadcaster RT. Since taking the decision to host the show, Mr Salmond has come under sustained criticism for his association with the channel and for the credibility he is affording a broadcaster the European Union have classed as an ‘Agent of propaganda for the Russian state’.

“The expansionist aggression shown by Russia in recent weeks has horrified the world and brought Europe to the brink of conflict for the first time since the Balkans, yet RT have covered the invasion of Ukraine as a ‘liberation’. Alex Salmond’s political party, Alba and their representatives have also been sympathetic to Russian interests in recent statements.”

He added that he believed Salmond was “unfit” to “offer further advice to Her Majesty the Queen from his role as a Privy Councillor.”

The former SNP leader has been a Privy Councillor since 2007.

Earlier in the day, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was asked by STV whether she agrees with calls for RT to be banned in the UK.

She replied: “Yes, I do.

“It’s a matter for Ofcom, but I do think there is now a very serious question about whether RT should continue to have a licence to broadcast here in Scotland.

“And I would certainly encourage Ofcom to look at that very, very seriously and closely indeed.”

She added that it is now “even more unthinkable” in the wake of this week’s events that Salmond maintains his relationship with RT.

She said: “I’m appalled at Alex Salmond’s continued involvement with RT.

“I don’t think it’s any secret now that I didn’t think he should ever have had a television show on RT.

“But it is even more unthinkable now that that should continue.”

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