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US media ‘dead,’ controlled by State Department — Russia’s senior lawmaker

August 06, 2014, 14:56 UTC+3 MOSCOW
“None of American journalists traveled to the Rostov Region to meet with Ukrainian soldiers, who crossed the border into Russia,” he says
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© ITAR-TASS / Mitya Aleshkovsky

MOSCOW, August 06. /ITAR-TASS/. A senior Russian lawmaker said US media “are dead” and totally controlled by the US Department of State as American journalists ignored a provided opportunity of talking in person with Ukrainian soldiers, who were recently sheltered by Russia.

“The US media are dead and they are now offices of the US Department of State,” Alexei Pushkov, the head of the State Duma Committee on Foreign Affairs, wrote in his Twitter account on Wednesday.

“None of American journalists traveled to the Rostov Region to meet with Ukrainian soldiers, who crossed the border into Russia,” the lawmaker from the parliament’s lower house added.

Maria Zakharova, a deputy head of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s press department, wrote earlier in her Facebook account that as the news broke out on Monday about over 400 Ukrainian soldiers crossing into Russia and seeking asylum, the Russian Foreign Ministry decided to arrange a meeting with the soldiers for foreign journalists accredited in Russia.

According to her, up to 40 journalists agreed to talk to the soldiers and an aircraft from the Defense Ministry was ready to take them to the Rostov Region on the border with Ukraine.

“Except for Bloomberg there were no journalists representing US media!!! An opportunity to meet with the Ukrainian military servicemen, who crossed into the Russian territory, was declined by representatives of leading US media,” she said. “They were CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor.”

On early Monday a group of 438 Ukrainian troops and border guards from pro-Kiev forces fighting against militia in the embattled southeast of Ukraine asked Russia’s southern border authorities for permission to enter Russia seeking asylum, and a humanitarian corridor was opened for them.

The Ukrainian military servicemen, who laid down arms and crossed into Russia, were accommodated in a tent camp that was set up for them near the Gukovo border checkpoint in Russia’s Rostov Region.

Except for Bloomberg there were no journalists representing US media!!! An opportunity to meet with the Ukrainian military servicemen, who crossed into the Russian territory, was declined by representatives of leading US media Maria Zakharova Deputy head of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s press department The soldiers expressed surprise over being treated well on the Russian territory as, according to them, news information they gathered earlier from Kiev media was in sharp contrast to the reality they saw.

“We could have a bath, received new clothes. We are very grateful,” one of them told Russian LifeNews online television channel.

According to the Ukrainian soldier, before they crossed the border they had been told that Russia was an “aggressor country” engaged in combat operations against them, but now they found out that it was not true, he added.

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