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Russia’s Lavrov Denounces ‘New McCarthyism’ in Attacks on Russian Ambassador Kislyak

March 3, 2017 (EIRNS)—In remarks to the media today, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov denounced as a "new McCarthyism," allegations by anonymous U.S. officials that Russia’s ambassador to the U.S., Sergei Kislyak, is a "spy and recruiter of spies."

"I can cite the media that say all this is very much reminiscent of a witch hunt and the McCarthyism era which we all thought was long gone in the U.S., a civilized country,"

Lavrov said, TASS reported.

"As for accusations against Kislyak and those he met with, our ambassador is accused of meeting with the U.S. politicians who opposed the Obama Administration. This is the essence of the accusations, to be honest. We don’t want to, and we won’t ape" the American approach to Kislyak, Lavrov said, noting that were Moscow "to apply the same principle, and scrutinize U.S. ambassador to Russia (John) Tefft and his contacts, we would see quite an amusing picture."

Lavrov pointed out that ambassadors are appointed to maintain relations with the host country.

"Relations are maintained in the form of meetings, talks, contacts with both ebxecutive officials ... and with politicians, public figures, non-governmental organizations. This practice has never been disputed,"

he said, RT reported.

During her weekly media briefing yesterday, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova responded sharply, and at some length, to a question about the "spy" allegations against ambassador Kislak, taking time, at the end, to tell a British CNN reporter, "Come on, stop spreading lies and fake news. This is good advice for CNN."

"The current goings-on in the Western, including U.S. media can be described as media vandalism," she said. "I wonder if the Western media has reached the rock bottom or it still has further to fall."

Zakharova charged that U.S. and other media are engaged in "an attempt at total disinformation of their own and the global public, but the main target is the American public." The current campaign is what George Orwell described in his "1984" book, she warned.

"The Big Brother in the United States today is the U.S. media, which have moved far beyond the limits of professional ethics and competence and feel free to denounce and condemn, or simply to fabricate news. This is exactly what is happening now.

"The current trend is to write about the demise of Russian diplomats in a disgraceful and inhumane manner. All of us wanted to believe that Russian Ambassador to India Alexander Kadakin, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Vitaly Churkin and Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov would live forever. But they are mere humans, and two of them died and one was killed. Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov was treacherously killed in a terrorist attack, yet many U.S. media outlets, though not all of them, did not describe his murder as a terrorist attack and, what is even worse, justified his murderer."