Russia said “liberal hypocrisy” has turned Western politics into a “conveyor belt of misanthropy,” as prominent Russian military correspondent Vladlen Tatarsky was buried in Moscow following a cafe blast in St. Petersburg last Sunday.
“Vladlen (Tatarsky) proved today that the front is everywhere: in the war zone, in the rear and in the cities, in hearts and minds. He was on the verge of death on the battlefield so many times, and died in the center of peaceful St. Petersburg at the hands of a terrorist, who, according to reports, acted on instructions from the Ukrainian special services,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Saturday on Telegram.
Zakharova said that the West did not condemn the killing of Tatarsky in the six days since the blast, claiming the suspect for the blast received sympathy instead and that the event was initially portrayed in the media as a “false flag.”
She further claimed that there are also those making statements on the blast, which, she said, “in legal language, can be unequivocally qualified as a public justification of terrorism.”
“Pathological hypocrisy has long been a political tradition of Western liberalism, its unconditional reflex. This is especially evident in the example of the thoroughly deceitful concern for the rights of journalists and the media,” Zakharova said.
She criticized the statement by the EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell on the arrest of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich in late March, saying that Borrell has not said “a half-word” either about Marat Kasem or about Julian Assange’s detention.
Gershkovich was detained on March 30 in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg on charges of “spying in the interests of the American government,” according to the Russian Federal Security Service.
Assange, an Australian citizen, is being held in the UK, where authorities approved his extradition to the US last year. He is wanted for his alleged role in espionage and the dissemination of classified US military information.
The US Justice Department labeled Assange’s actions as part of the “largest compromises of classified information in the history of the United States.”
Last November, major global media outlets joined forces to call on the US to drop charges against the WikiLeaks founder and halt his prosecution to protect journalism.
Meanwhile, Kasem, a Latvian national of Arab origin, worked for the Russian news agency Sputnik and was arrested on charges of violating EU sanctions upon arriving in Riga for a personal visit.
Zakharova further condemned discussions in the EU on protecting the rights of the media amid the liquidation and bankruptcy of several Russian media channels operating in EU countries, such as RT and Sputnik.
“Liberal hypocrisy has turned the politics of the West into a conveyor belt of misanthropy. First, a conscious silence about the murders of Vladlen Tatarsky, Darya Dugina, Oleg Klokov, the next step is to justify violence against the ‘wrong’ journalists. Apparently, they won’t stop there,” she claimed.
Last Sunday, a blast in a cafe in the city of St. Petersburg killed Tatarsky, also injuring 42 others.
Russia’s anti-terrorism committee claimed that Ukraine’s special services were behind the explosion, while Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said: “I don’t think about what is happening in St. Petersburg or Moscow. Russia should think about this. I am thinking about our country.”