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MOSCOW, March 30. /TASS/. The US media’s crusade to pressure and smear Russian diplomats in the United States can be qualified as a threat, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a briefing on Thursday.
The diplomat referred "to a new outbreak of hysteria around routine diplomatic contacts between (the new US) leadership and employees of the Russian Embassy in Washington".
"Some American and not only American media outlets are again stirring up the issue of Russia’s alleged interference in last year’s presidential election in the US. Such conduct by American journalists and media can be qualified plainly as a threat against Russian diplomats".
She explained that some journalists and media outlets are presenting the matter this way: "if Russian representatives and diplomats deny them an interview on very specific issues - and we understand that these interviews are requested exactly to keep the issue of Russia’s alleged meddling in the election afloat - new compromising information will be planted".
Zakharova emphasized that Russia qualifies the so-called compromising information as fake news and disinformation.
"One may get an impression that a new round in the US election campaign is due soon," Zakharova said. "It seems that the administration will approach a new electoral cycle with one result - artistic demagoguery about Russia’s meddling in the previous American elections".
"It’s high time to put an end to these underhanded ‘information’ games," the diplomat stressed.