Lukashenko, Lebedev, Evgeny Lebedev discussed on The Media Show

The Media Show
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Automatic TRANSCRIPT

I mean, at some point he the most bizarre moment of the interview was when he turned to Lukashenko had said, what do you think about group sex? And there was a bit early for that on the radio. There was a long awkward pose on Lukashenko kind of gestured me and asked me to move into the shot because the deal, you know, the deal we ended up as news night ended up doing a story about lebedev interviewing Lukashenko rather than doing the story with lebedev, because that's really important to emphasize. Did not want me asking any questions. So he had secured the interview, I suppose. You were along for the ride to film the, you know, getting that interview him getting that interview, I suppose. We will move on from there. And move away from evgeny lebedev at this point and back to that question that I asked at the start of the show about why it's only now that we're reading investigations into Russian influence in the UK. And I'm thinking in particular about Roman, Abramovich and what we're learning now, Lionel barber, you know, you'll know from your time as editor of the FT about the legal perils of writing about the oligarchs, I assume, you know, has the risk of litigation from London's top law firms suppressed reporting about them until now, do you think? Well, I'm not carrying water KT for the FT, but I'm going to assure you that we did write about Russian influence in London. And I still had the letters from the law firms threatening us. And you know, this was literally boots that hung up by my boots on Saturday morning. And this was, you seen the names of the law firms in the House of lords, when Tom Burgess and Catherine belton were testifying just as we speak. But crucially, the problem is this a very interesting question about the word of the use oligarch, some of these very, very rich people sent very, very tough letters, insisting they were not oligarchs because this refers to the late 90s we were hearing about earlier where some people became very, very rich, very quickly gaining control of natural resources in the 1990s when we basically had the wild west out in Russia. Now, some of them have since become great philanthropists. If you think of Len blavatnik, he owns Warner music, who makes very clear his Ukrainian. Well, yes, there are also Misha Friedman, who owns the big natural resources company. And these people, but yes, they have, but lember, that name has not no, absolutely. Crucial point. The crucial point Katie is some of the, I think you've got to distinguish between groups of oligarchs. Some of them have become great philanthropists. They've given money, take modern, like Limbaugh, Friedman, some of the Ukrainian, some of them own a football club, like mister Abramovich. He also happened to be a governor in a Siberian province. He does give money to charity. He doesn't sponsor art museums, but and then there are others who are much darker figures of interview one of them in Russian, mister sexy, new controls, wasn't it. These are different categories of people. Bottom line, the law is not in favor of investigating public service investigations because of the balance on libel risk. Because that's essentially what those people you mentioned, those journalists Katherine belton from Reuters and Tom Burgess at the FT were saying in the foreign affair select committee this week. About the difficulty in publishing these stories..

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