NICOLA Sturgeon is facing a growing cross-party clamour to condemn her predecessor’s job for a Moscow-backed TV channel in light of the Westminster Russia report.

Sir Keir Starmer’s office said the First Minister should “completely condemn” Alex Salmond for hosting a weekly show on RT.

Former Scottish Secretary David Mundell also said it was “absolutely shameful” that Mr Salmond was “in the pay of the Kremlin as an apparatchik for RT”. 

On Tuesday, Westminster’s Intelligence and Security Committee published its long-delayed report on Russian meddling in UK democratic processes.

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It said RT, formerly known as Russia Today, put out "serious distortions" along with fellow state-owned broadcaster Sputnik.

Mr Salmond began appearing on RT in November 2017, shortly after losing his Gordon seat in that year’s general election.

The producer of the Alex Salmond Show is Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh, a former SNP MP who also lost her seat in the 2017 election. 

Mr Salmond has since invited a number of serving SNP politicians onto RT, includings MPs Kenny MacAskill, Angus MacNeil and Dr Lisa Cameron, and MSP Alex Neil.

At Prime Minister’s Questions, Sir Keir attacked Boris Johnson for delaying the report, and accused the Tory Government of failing to act swiftly on a national security problem.

He also asked Mr Johnson if he agreed it was "time to look again at the licensing for RT to operate in the UK".

Speaking afterwards, the Labour leader's spokesman said of Mr Salmond’s work for RT: "We completely condemn it and we advise the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to do the same. She should make a public statement condemning it.

"He [Sir Keir] would certainly say it is the wrong thing to do.

"As Keir said, no member of the frontbench has been on Russia Today since Keir was put in charge and it is certainly not anything we would endorse."

In the Commons today, where his comment was protected by parliamentary privilege, Mr Mundell said: “It is absolutely shameful that Alex Salmond, the former First Minister of Scotland, remains in the pay of the Kremlin as an apparatchik of Russia Today, and that so few nationalists condemn him for it.”

Afterwards, the Dumfriesshire MP added: “It is now abundantly clear that the RT network, controlled by the Russian state, is used to disrupt and destabilise other countries.

“As the Intelligence and Security Committee Report shows, the Russian state is a serious threat to our security and democracy so is it astonishing that Alex Salmond is still taking money from them.

“In the context of this damning report, there can be no justification for a former First Minister and leader of the SNP, and advocate of independence, to be working for the Russian state.

“And what's just as concerning is the unwillingness of so many nationalists to call out this behaviour despite saying they have concerns about Russia.

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“After the report was published we should have heard the First Minister speak out, so I now call on her and other leading nationalists to condemn Alex Salmond’s ongoing relationship with the Russian state in the strongest possible terms.”

Liberal Democrat MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton added: "Alex Salmond needs to accept that he has been promoting a TV channel that has a damaging agenda for western democracy. 

“He should pull out now because he is insulting our country's democratic values by staying in his post." 

The First Minister has previously voiced her displeasure at Mr Salmond's choice of work, saying in 2017 that "the choice of channel would not have been my choice".

She added: "Of course, Alex is not currently an elected politician and is free to do as he wishes, but had I been asked, I would have advised against RT and suggested he seek a different channel to air what I am sure will be an entertaining show.

"Neither myself nor the SNP will shy away from criticising Russian policy when we believe it is merited."

When Ms Sturgeon was asked about the Russia report, Mr Salmond and RT at the Scottish Government daily briefing on Tuesday, she brushed the question aside by saying her views on the subject were already known. 

Mr Salmond resigned from the SNP in August 2018 after it emerged the Scottish Government had been investigated complaints of sexual misconduct against him.

He was later charged with sexual assault and acquitted on all 13 counts in March. 

The Scottish Government has been asked for comment.