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Russian embassy in UK accuses Times of distorting facts in Moscow's Brexit meddling survey

November 17, 18:54 UTC+3 LONDON

According to the embassy, Russian experts should look into all the allegations concerning Moscow’s interference in the British affairs, which may damage Russian-UK relations

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© AP Photo/Matt Dunham

LONDON, November 17. /TASS/. Russia’s embassy in the UK has accused the Times newspaper of distorting the results of a survey conducted by the Swansea University, which concerns the alleged Russian interference in Brexit, an embassy source said.

According to the source, the embassy received the preliminary results of the survey, which prove that the Times had distorted the data. The embassy source pointed out that the Russian diplomats planned to request the Times to clarify this violation of journalistic standards.

On Thursday, the Times cited surveys conducted by Swansea University, the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Edinburgh, claiming that "more than 150,000 accounts based in Russia, which had previously confined their posts to subjects such as the Ukrainian conflict, switched attention to Brexit in the days leading up to last year’s vote."

"Russian Twitter accounts posted more than 45,000 messages about Brexit in 48 hours during last year’s referendum in an apparently co-ordinated attempt to sow discord," the Times added.

Following the publication of this article, Russia’s embassy in the United Kingdom requested the three universities to provide the original data about Russia’s alleged interference in Brexit.

According to the embassy, Russian experts should look into all the allegations concerning Moscow’s interference in the British affairs, which may damage Russian-UK relations.

British PM’s banquet speech

On November 13, British Prime Minister Theresa May addressed a banquet hosted by the Lord Mayor of the City of London, saying that Russia would not succeed in undermining the resilience of western democracies. According to her, NATO reform is aimed at deterring and countering hostile Russian activities. "It is why we have stepped up our military and economic support to Ukraine," she added. The British prime minister also said that Russia was "threatening the international order on which we all depend."

In the past months, Russia has been facing continuous allegations of interference in other countries’ electoral processes, particularly in the 2016 US presidential election. Moscow has been rejecting all allegations in meddling in the US and European elections, calling them groundless and pointing out that no evidence has been brought forward.

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