Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, refused to discuss spying allegations against the Russian ambassador to the US with a CNN reporter, advising the broadcaster to stop spreading lies and fake news.
A CNN crew attended Zakharova’s weekly briefing in Moscow on Thursday, but asked no questions at the session itself about a fresh report by CNN, which said “current and former US intelligence officials have described Kislyak as a top spy and recruiter of spies.”
The journalist approached the ministry spokeswoman after the event concluded, but she refused to seriously discuss the issue.
“CNN accused him of being a Russian spy, recruiting spies… Oh, my god!” Zakharova exclaimed.
The CNN reporter then tried to correct the spokeswoman by saying that the accusations came from some US officials.
“Come on, stop spreading lies and fake news. This is a good advice for the CNN. Thank you,” Zakharova replied as she walked away.
On Wednesday, US Attorney General Jeff Sessions was accused by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of lying under oath when, during his confirmation hearing, he told Senator Al Franken that he did not have communications with Russian officials during Donald Trump’s election campaign.
During the briefing, Zakharova blasted US media reports on contacts between Russian diplomats and US officials as a “disgrace” and a “manifestation of media vandalism.”
“I have a question: is it rock bottom, which the US media has reached, or is there an even greater depth for them to dive?” Zakharova said.
The mainstream media “cross the line far beyond the professional ethics and their competence. They accuse and judge by simply fabricating false information.”
“The things that the US media affords itself to report are just an attempt at… a total disinformation of the public in America and worldwide,” Zakharova explained, adding the US audience is, of course, the main target.