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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.
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."
After the Syrian military, backed by the Russian Air Force, completed its operation to liberate the city of Palmyra, RT has been given exclusive access to the ancient city recaptured from Islamic State terrorists.
RT’s correspondent, Lizzie Phelan, has captured exclusive images in Syria after 'The Pearl of the Desert' was retaken after an offensive by government troops.
Phelan reported on the ongoing battles with the jihadists on the outskirts of the city. Besides capturing footage of the ancient city ruins at a distance, she also noted smoke columns rising from the air strikes at sites where battles were still raging for the airport.
“It is being reported that pro-government forces with the support of Russian attack helicopters have now taken control of the entire city of Palmyra. We know that the government soldiers are in fact stationed in the ancient city among those famous ruins,” the RT correspondent said.
On the outskirts of the city, however, the battle is still “very fierce,” with hundreds of ISIS fighters trying to penetrate government lines. The terrorists, Phelan noted, are armed with “tanks and big caliber machine guns” in addition to “double barrel anti-aircraft guns.”
Part of the footage captured by RT’s crew on the ground shows evening views just outside the ancient citadel which Syrian forces managed to secure after days of intense fighting. The entrance to the ancient ruins is guarded by loyal government troops. Access to the site is still limited as terrorists mined the entire area before their retreat.
Senior Syrian officials confirmed on Thursday that they had managed to push the militants out of the city. Earlier, Palmyra's liberation was announced by Russia's Presidential spokesman, citing the Defence Ministry.
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