CNN Spreads Fake News Story About Russia Retaliating Over U.S. Sanctions

CNN tweeted out a “breaking” news item. But as it turns out, it wasn’t true. (There’s a surprise.) They claimed that in response to U.S. sanctions, Russian officials closed the Anglo-American School of Moscow.

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CNN also mentioned the alleged closure in an article about Obama’s announcement of sanctions against Russia. Here’s what they said:

Russia’s first visible action came later Thursday, when Russian authorities ordered the closure of the Anglo-American School of Moscow, a US official briefed on the matter said. The order from the Russian government closes the school, which serves children of US, British and Canadian embassy personnel, to US and foreign nationals.

The order also closes access to the US embassy vacation house in Serebryany Bor, near Moscow.

Forbes explained:

CNN tweeted on Thursday that Russia was closing the Anglo-American School of Moscow, a private K-12 English-language school for foreigners and wealthy Russians. Sources in Moscow who send their children to the school told me that the school denied it was being forced to shut its doors.  School offices were closed for the holidays. Emails to the school’s director, business office and public relations staff were not yet returned.

[…]

The CNN story of the closure remains on its website as part of a larger article on Obama’s sanctions. No correction was issued. No call to the school was reported by CNN.

CNN’s initial report was based off an anonymous “U.S. official.” Other big media networks picked up the story, citing CNN’s article.

It wasn’t until Friday that Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Maria Zakharova chimed in on Facebook and stated that the report was a lie.

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Philip Hodges

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