Kremlin Launches Campaign To Free Alleged Russian Agent Maria Butina

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Russia’s Foreign Ministry is urging Twitter users to change their profile pictures in support of Maria Butina — an alleged Russian spy at the heart of U.S.-Kremlin row.

 

 

A 29-year-old Russian woman living in Washington, who has been accused of using sex, lies and guns to infiltrate American politics, was arrested and charged with conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian government a couple of days ago.

Maria Butina’s arrest came to light shortly after the disastrous and heavily criticized Helsinki summit between President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Now, Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has launched a Twitter flash mob calling for the release of the alleged Russian spy at the heart of U.S.-Kremlin row.

“In connection with the arrest in the United States of Russian citizen Maria Butina, we’re starting a flash mob in her support. #FreeMariaButina. Put a photo of Maria as your avatar,” read a message from the official Twitter account of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The strategy used by the foreign government to show support for one of its citizen, who was charged with carrying out a years-long conspiracy on the American soil, is hardly surprising, considering the U.S. intelligence found that Kremlin manipulated social media during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. 

However, by late Thursday, it appeared not many Russians had responded to the call of the ministry for changing their profile photos. In fact, responses in English mocked the ministry for campaigning for an agent charged with numerous treasons.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The prosecutors accused Butina of cultivating contacts by various means — including reportedly offering sex to an influential Republican Party member in exchange for a U.S. American special interest organization she targeted.

Aside from that, her time in the United States was spent fostering relationships with conservative, pro-gun organizations. According to the complaint against her, she worked with two unnamed U.S. citizens and the Russian official to try to influence American politics and infiltrate National Rifle Association (NRA).

Moreover, Butina was also a Trump supporter who reportedly bragged at parties in Washington that she could use her political connections to help get people jobs in the Trump administration after the election.

For now she faced charges that carry sentences of several years in jail.

Her father, Valery denounced the charges against her "psychopathy and a witch-hunt".

Banner Image Credits: Reuters

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