Russia: US presence in Syria «resembles occupation» — Zakharova

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova slammed US presence in Syria claiming that the country's military «stays illegally» in Damascus, during a press conference in Moscow, on Thursday. «They have no appropriate official permission or invitation from Damascus,» Zakharova said, adding, «They are there against the will of the legitimate government of Syria, without legal basis, so in... Еще fact their behaviour closely resembles that of an occupation.» Zakharova also commented on reports of a possible de-ranking of RT and Sputnik news sites in Google's search results, accusing the US tech giant in making contradictory claims. She said, «Google issued a statement that it does not engage in de-ranking of individual sites. You know, this is already like playing both good and bad cop, kind and evil. Now the main thing is to understand who is good and who is evil there.» «What Google does in relation to Russia Today and Sputnik is part of a large global picture and it, of course, comes from the West. This is one piece of a big puzzle,» the spokesperson concluded. Zakharova's statement comes two days after the announcement made by Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman of Google's parent company, Alphabet, who said that the company would «engineer» algorithms that would make it harder to find articles from RT and Sputnik News on popular Google News service. Sputnik and RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan criticised the move as «defying all logic and reason» reminding Google's previous statement in which the company asserted that no violations by Russian media has been found.

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