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Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov has been labeled a “pathological liar” after arguing that his glamorous influencer daughter lived in “Spartan conditions” and struggled to make ends meet while studying in Paris.
Elizaveta Peskova, 25, who co-owns a successful event-planning business and runs a Russian-French cultural foundation, spent years living with her mother in Europe, before returning to Moscow about 5 years ago and graduating with honors from the prestigious Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO).
But her father maintained that his jet-setting daughter, whose Instagram page is brimming with photos of the statuesque blonde posing up in expensive outfits, was never a “mazhor” – a Russian slang term similar to “nepo-baby” that is used to describe children of privileged government officials and businessmen, as The Times first reported.
Peskova relocated to the City of Lights with her mother, Ekaterina Solotsinskaya, 47, after her parents split up, and lived there for many years, attending a boarding school and later enrolling in the EDC Paris Business School.
“My daughter was never a ‘mazhor’ child,” Peskov insisted in an interview with the student television channel MGIMO 360 that aired on its YouTube channel Friday. “She had a very complicated life, a complicated education.”
Peskov claimed that during the time she spent studying in France, Elizaveta “lived there very pooly, in very Spartan conditions, and was never a ‘mazhor.’”
“She was forced to overcome a huge number of difficulties, she spent a long time trying to find herself, and thank God she has now settled…and has become a career woman,” the presidential spokesman added.
Asked by the fawning interviewer how he was able to instill good qualities in his daughter, Peskov, 56, said that Elizaveta learned life lessons from having faced hardships.
“It’s one thing if you are truly a ‘mazhor’ and you’re living large, when you’ve got nothing to aspire to, but it’s another matter when every day you need to overcome problems: where to rent housing a bit more cheaply, how to save money so that you can buy yourself a new pair of jeans at the end of the month,” he said.
The interviewer followed up by asking whether Peskov had deliberately sent his daughter to study abroad so she could learn to fend for herself, to which the high-ranking Kremlin official — who has been incessantly criticizing the West and Western values — sheepishly replied that “it was a different time back then.”
Lyubov Sobol, an aide to jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, clapped back at Peskov’s claims, sharing a photo of Elizaveta Peskova lounging in what appears to be a private jet and writing in the caption: “Spartan conditions according to the pathological liar Peskov.”
An investigation by Navalny’s anti-corruption foundation previously uncovered that Peskova and her mother had allegedly bought an apartment in central Paris for nearly $2 million through a French company called Sirius.
Peskova is a part-owner of an event company called Centrum Moscow, which counts among its clients Russian’s Ministry of Trade and Industry, and other government agencies.
In March of this year, the company has grown its earnings 70-fold compared to the same time in 2022, raking in about $1.77 million, reported the independent news outlet Verstka.
Peskova is also vice president of the Foundation for the Development of Russian-French Historical Initiatives, which was co-founded by French national Pierre Malinowski, who was said to have close ties to a well-connected Russian oligarch.
The US Treasury last year sanctioned Peskov, his daughter and other members of his family, claiming that they lived “luxurious lifestyles that are incongruous with Peskov’s civil servant salary.” Peskov has been Putin’s mouthpiece since 2012.
The EU has also added Peskova to its sanctions list, citing her association “with a listed person who has actively supported actions or policies which undermine or threaten the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine, as well as stability and security in Ukraine.”
In an Instagram post shared with her 225,000 followers in April, Peskova bragged that she was “earned a lot” from her work on various projects.