MOSCOW, January 25. /TASS/. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov protested against Washington’s statements on the recent unauthorized rallies in Russia in a conversation with US Ambassador to Moscow John Sullivan, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Channel One’s Vremya Pokazhet (or Time Will Tell) show on Monday.
"Russia strongly protested against the US embassy’s social media posts in support of unlawful activities in a number of Russian cities," she pointed out.
"The US ambassador was told that Russia viewed these publications and the US State Department’s statements as direct interference in our country’s domestic affairs. The need was also emphasized for diplomats to strictly abide by Russian laws and generally recognized diplomatic rules," the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said.
Moscow will address the activities of US Internet giants in relation to the spreading of fake news about unauthorized rallies in Russia, Maria Zakharova said. "We have taken note of the large-scale activities of Internet giants from the US. Social media networks and video hosting platforms have been spreading fake news. We are already dealing with these issues and will remain focused on them as far as our interaction with the Americans and activities within international organizations are concerned," Zakharova pointed out.
When asked about the consequences that US Internet giants could possibly face, the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said that "they are well aware of what it may lead to." "The matter is that they did the same to a number of Russian media outlets in the past, except that they imposed restrictions and compiled blacklists over actions they [Russian media] never did," Zakharova noted. "Social media networks headquartered in the US have shown the world how they can moderate content, particularly within the US, banning the US president for allegedly spreading fake news and threats to take some illegal actions. However, in this case, although a slew of fake news was detected and Moscow officially rejected it, there were no moderation efforts. It turns out they are breaking their own community rules," Zakharova concluded.
On Friday, the US embassy in Moscow posted information about the time and places where unauthorized rallies were expected to be held in various Russian cities the next day. The Russian Foreign Ministry, in turn, said, that the move was beyond the embassy’s concern for US nationals residing in Russia.