5 very serious answers to 5 very serious questions from BuzzFeed
In 2005, at 25 years old, Margarita was named Editor-in-Chief of RT, the first Russian round-the-clock English-language news channel. Later on, after the launch of RT in Arabic (Rusiya Al-Yaum) and RT in Spanish, she became Editor-in-Chief of the whole multilingual television news network. Margarita Simonyan is also the first Vice-President of Russia’s National Association of TV and Radio Broadcasters (NAT).
5 Very Serious Answers to 5 Very Serious Questions from BuzzFeed.
BuzzFeed:Do you regularly have meetings at the Kremlin or with Russian government officials? Can you describe them, if so? How much direct influence does the Kremlin have over what RT reports?
I don't have to go to meetings at the Kremlin because I already live there. My office is located there as well, as are the offices of all other TV executives in Russia. And RT doesn't do any of its own investigating or reporting -- we just read the latest Kremlin press releases on camera. It is much more efficient that way.
BuzzFeed:Why is your office apparently located on a different floor than the newsroom, as one employee told me?
No idea on which floor my RT office is, as I work straight out of my Kremlin digs. I've heard that it's nice though.
BuzzFeed:Also, was Anastasia Churkina hired because of who her father is? Why was she allowed to interview her own father on camera?
All of our employees are hired based on the criteria of being Vitaly Churkin's children. Anastasia Churkina interviewed her father because his other children were busy at that time.
BuzzFeed:I'm told that RT Arabic is run by President Putin's former translator -- is that how that position was filled?
Indeed it is. Please note that the head of RT Spanish is President Putin's former chef and the head of RT International is his former hairdresser. Presidential affiliations are the only credentials that matter in prospective candidates who are not fortunate enough to be Mr. Churkin's offspring.
BuzzFeed:Based on the perspective of former employees…
Are you sure? It is highly unlikely you could reach actual former-RT employees as it is company policy to unleash the KGB on anyone who dares to leave.
Margarita Simonyan, RT’s editor-in-chief