Russia: Putin claims ‘government’ chemical attacks in Syria are fake news

Megyn Kelly, NBC reporter (English): «Why don't you?» Vladimir Putin, Russian President (Russian): «If he [Alexei Navalny] deserves it. There are no exceptions for anyone. No exceptions. But we are not talking about pardon now; we are talking about certain political forces. They do not have a development programme for the country. What do they have that is positive and what I like? That they... Еще expose problems, and this is actually good, this is the right thing to do, and it needs to be done. But this is not enough for the country's positive development, not enough at all. Because focusing on problems only is not enough; moreover, it is even dangerous, because it can lead to a certain level of destruction, while we need creation.» *MULTIPLE SHOTS AT SOURCE* Russian President Vladimir Putin said allegations on chemical weapon attacks by the government in Syria were fake news, during an interview with an NBC reporter Megyn Kelly in the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad on Friday, March 2. Answering Kelly's question whether chemical weapon attacks in Syria were fake news or not, Putin said «of course.» «The Syrian Government destroyed [its] chemical weapons long ago,» Putin said, before criticising the United States for how Raqqa and Mosul were cleared. «Look how they liberated Raqqa: the dead have still not been removed from the ruins or buried.» Putin commented on the so-called 'Panama Papers' by saying they had «no effect whatsoever. This is nothing but nonsense and media chatter.» Kelly touched on Alexei Navalny, a Russian activist and politician who was banned from candidacy in the upcoming presidential election due to a suspended sentence for embezzlement. Putin elaborated on the issue by saying that «any person can be pardoned if he deserves it.» When asked about US President Donald Trump, Putin described him as a «fast-learner,» with a «pragmatic approach.» Commenting on the 13 Russian citizens indicted by the US on charges of interfering in the 2016 presidential elections, Putin said he had no goal of looking for them. As for the investigation on this case, Putin added «so what do you want? For us to open investigations just because Congress said so?» To avoid similar future scenarios, the Russian President offered to sign an agreement with the US on working in cyberspace. When asked about a successor, Putin admitted he has been thinking about it since 2000. Without mentioning anyone, he concluded «in the end, the choice will still be up to the Russian people.»

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