Moscow was concerned that US journalist Tucker Carlson could face “persecution” even before his interview with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has revealed.
In an interview released by journalist Pavel Zarubin on Sunday, Peskov noted that it was Carlson who asked Putin for a sit-down, adding that the president quickly agreed to the idea.
However, the spokesman admitted that “there was some concern that there would be some kind of persecution of poor Carlson even before the interview,” given that the West “is becoming increasingly unpredictable and could stoop to anything.”
He noted that the journalist is no stranger to this kind of pressure, saying Carlson is smart enough to know that “emotions would run high.” The interview, however, brought the reporter a lot of popularity, according to the spokesman.
Peskov also responded to critics who accused the journalist of not asking Putin tough questions. “Western viewers were lucky that Carlson did not escalate… If the questions had been extremely sharp, so would have been the answers. Some might not have liked that.”