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'Putin Does Not Need Twitter To Be Close To People', Says Kremlin Spokesman

Written By Asia News International | Mumbai | Published:

Russian President Vladimir Putin does not need Twitter to become closer to people, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday.

"Putin does not have such a need yet. He does not need Twitter to become closer to people," Mr Peskov said in an interview for Russian newspapers Argumenty i Fakty, when asked whether Putin could follow the example of his US counterpart, who actively communicates on social networks.

He also said that Putin did not have a smartphone, as it would mean complete transparency of his life.

"A head of state can't in fact have a smartphone, since this [possessing a smartphone] means that a person settles for absolute transparency," Mr Peskov said.

He went on to say that Putin preferred reading newspapers and magazines and also using the internet to learn new information.

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Mr. Peskov added that he himself did not use social networks, stressing that active use of social networks could create risks for one's safety.

"How many Russian accounts were damaged when the United States suddenly decided that they were created to meddle into the US presidential election? I am sure that a huge number of account [users] did not even know anything about this election. But they were just banned, and that's it," Mr Peskov said.

He compared using social networks by using international banking transfer operator SWIFT.

"When the United States doesn't like Iran's behavior, it just suspends Iranian banks from this system. And are there any guarantees that Russia or Europe will not be suspended tomorrow?" asked Peskov.

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"Both social networks and economic systems are politicized in the current situation. Sooner or later, a person or a state faces need to choose: either you start following our dictation, or we'll ban you. In fact, this is all about personal or state sovereignty," he specified.

He added that he surfed the internet and read state information agencies' newsfeeds and also materials prepared by the Kremlin press service in his free time.