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MOSCOW, October 21. /TASS/ Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has commented on the developments unfolding around the Russian television channel RT that had its bank accounts closed on Monday. The spokesperson for the UK Prime Minister said that the British government had nothing to do with NatWest bank’s decision.
"The story about RT’s accounts freeze has become pretty intriguing," Zakharova wrote on her Facebook page. "It began to smell exactly like the BBC."
"The Russian service of Her Majesty’s news outlet stepped in and just in few days they had dug up information concerning the Russian channel’s… well, actually they dug up nothing. It often happens so that you try and try, dig and dig and in the end dig up nothing. There is a large article about nothing. What for? Just to leave a bad aftertaste" Zakharova wrote.
"It reminds me somewhat of the Leonid Sviridov story," she went on. "In order to conjure up an excuse to deport Novosti’s news correspondent from Poland over the exhibition in the memory of (Andrei) Stenin, the Polish authorities spread the rumors saying that he was "not really a journalist". Immediately after that everyone and their mother began talking about that as if on cue. Some individuals at the Ekho Moskvy (or Moscow’s echo) radio station were trying harder than anyone else."
"One broadcast after another. It turned out to be a funny story as in the end all the ‘diggers’ found out was that Leonid Sviridov had been a staff member of an organization dubbed with three letters, but it was not the organization that they all had in mind - the Federal Security Service, or FSB - but another one - that same radio station ‘Ekho’ (‘e-kh-o’ is spelled using three letters in Russian). Yes, this is what the ‘investigative journalists’ found out when they got access to his employment records," Zakharova explained.
"I can feel, it will be something like that this time, too," she noted. "But in any case, I wish BBC Russian luck as they will need it, because digging is an exciting and unpredictable thing."