The Russian Foreign Ministry has accused the French President of spreading fake news.
Emmanuel Macron blamed the rise of the yellow vest movement on Russia and social media but according to ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, his real aim is to undermine the work of the Russian media.
RT reports: Before Yellow Vests went out to the streets in the twelfth weekend of consecutive mass demonstrations against the government’s economic policies, weekly political magazine Le Point published an interview with President Macron. There he blamed the scale of public discontent on Russians, social media, the far right and the far left.
“If it’s confirmed that Macron said that RT and Sputnik are buying social media accounts to destabilize the situation in Frаnce – this is real fake news,” Maria Zakharova told RT.
The foreign ministry sent a request to Paris to clarify whether the claims are a true representation of Macron’s thoughts and if that is the official position of the French government.
Macron lambasted the French media for picking up on what people are saying on social media and urged them to put more trust into the words of officials rather than “ordinary” people like the Yellow Vests. Noting the president’s dismissive attitude to the public.
Zakharova said that Macron should not be surprised that it’s the Yellow Vests and not the authorities that are being interviewed frequently, as officials had long been prohibited from talking to Russian media.
She also said that it’s “outrageous” that the French president equaled fascists and Russians when he was listing those he blamed for fueling protests. Macron used the term “la fachosphère” that describes ultra-nationalists and fascists.
“Russians are presented as the new enemies of the 21st century by French officials,” Zakharova said. She called attacks on Russian media a “co-ordinated” and “well-directed” campaign that is orchestrated by Brussels and Washington, who want to present Russian news outlets as “toxic” without bothering to provide facts.
“If there was any proof, they would have produced it already,” she said, noting that the ministry’s numerous requests to provide evidence when Russia is accused of “meddling” through its media went without a reply.
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