07:40 GMT17 February 2020
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    Margarita Simonyan, the editor-in-chief of Sputnik news agency and RT broadcaster, said she had a different understanding of democratic values, commenting on the French La Republique en Marche party's call on media during the presidential campaign of its candidate to deliberately stay away from the information published by the two media outlets.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) On Monday, whistleblowing website WikiLeaks released thousands of emails linked to the presidential campaign of Emmanuel Macron, the founder of LREM who served as the party's leader before his victory in the presidential election in May. One such email first appeared on the party's website in February, containing a plea from Richard Ferrand, the secretary general of the party, to French and foreign media to avoid using information published by RT and Sputnik.

    "The party of democratic President Macron democratically advised French media 'not to spread the information' of RT and Sputnik because we had no particular love for their candidate. I had a somewhat different idea of democratic values," Simonyan told RT.

    Ferrand's communique accused RT and Sputnik of spreading "the most slanderous rumors" about Macron, adding that the two websites served as an "intermediary" for all attacks on Macron, including the threats of Julian Assange, WikiLeaks' founder.

    During his joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin in May, Macron said that RT and Sputnik had been spreading lies about himself personally and his campaign during the recent presidential campaign. Simonyan has stressed that not a single example of spreading misinformation by the Russian media was ever provided by Macron's team. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov also said that there had been no facts proving these accusations.

    RT reporters were denied entry to the headquarters of then-French presidential candidate Macron twice in April, and on May 7, a Sputnik reporter was not allowed to enter the square in front of Paris' Louvre museum, where Macron and his supporters were celebrating the victory in the presidential run-off.


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