Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ
16th November, 2015
Maria Zakharova is the new spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry. The very self-confident blonde is the attractive figurehead of the Kremlin. Now she has shown foreign journalists her claws…
Feminine, beautiful and successful – this is not as problematic in Eastern Europe. The spokesperson of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, enjoys her status as a sexy beast. On her Instagram account she shows herself from her most beautiful sides. At the weekly press briefing the beauty drove out the claws. The background: The news agency Reuters had dared to publish details about the life of a Putin’s alleged daughter.
Maria Zakharova does not handle the Agency’s work directly, however, to avoid perceived relations with Putin. They tore a Reuters report apart, that had claimed that the Kremlin would prepare an 18-month-long process of political reform in Syria. Having criticized the functioning of the Agency, Maria Zakharova directly ridiculed the journalists. “I have a serious question for the agency Reuters, which is represented in Moscow by fifty journalists: Are you all journalists, when you write anything and comment on anything from Moscow and everything is written by Reuters in London: What are you all doing here in these numbers? “
A clear challenge. But what had Reuters reported about the real or perceived daughter of Putin’s ? For some time there were rumours that Putin’s daughter Katerina, under the name Katerina Tikhonova, lives in Moscow. Tikhonova is, according to Reuters, in a relationship with Kirill Shamalov, son of Nikolai Shamalov, an old friend of Putin and co-owner of the Rossiya Bank, which in turn manages the assets of the Kremlin top dogs. The article lists a series of impressive possessions of the Shamalov family.
The ‘news’ did not stop there, as Reuters revealed they had an anonymous informant. A peculiarity because Western media rarely finds access to the circle around Putin. According to Reuters, a Russian source (Andrey Akimov, deputy chairman of Gazprom Bank), is said to have known the alleged daughter of Putin as a child and has confirmed to Reuters that it was in reality Tikhonova. However, Akimov later denies having said such a thing, whilst Reuters remained firm on the issue. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that undesirable coverage of children by politicians who want to protect their privacy would not be admissible in Germany.
In Germany, however, it is difficult to present the Foreign Office as a pin-up figure with an Instagram account like Maria Zakharova. In Berlin this would seem to be conflicting and untrustworthy. Zakharova has already been labelled in US media as the “Bombshell” (Sex Bomb).
Her appearance is also a subtle diplomatic provocation. During the Ukraine crisis, the former spokeswoman for the US State Department, Jen Psaki, was a hated figure in Russia. She was attacked due to some factual errors and slips of the tongue, but primarily because of her unassuming appearance with scorn and derision.