The defense of journalist of the The Wall Street Journal Evan Gershkovicaccused in Russia of espionage of the military industry in the midst of the war in Ukraine, appealed the extension of his arrest handed down this week by a court.
The appeal was registered the day before, two days after the Moscow Lefortovsky Court prolong the arrest of the US correspondent until the August 30ththe agency reported interface.
Gershkovich’s lawyers ask for an alternative provisional measure to pretrial detention.
The journalist was arrested at the end of March in Yekaterinburg, the capital of the Urals.
The Federal Security Service (FSB, formerly KGB) formally accused him of espionage on April 7 for collect data that are state secrets about the activities of a company of the Russian military industry.
So much The Wall Street Journal Like many of his colleagues, they have denied the Russian security forces’ accusations against the correspondent and have demanded his immediate release.
Dozens of independent Russian journalists wrote a letter demanding their release and calling the accusation of espionage gratuitous under article 276 of the penal code, a charge that carries up to 20 years in jail.
In a recent meeting with White House correspondents, the President of the United States, Joe Bidencalled for the release of US reporters imprisoned in different parts of the world.
“Our message is that journalism is not a crime. We are working every day so that it can be released. We are looking for any opportunity and using all the tools at our disposal. Please keep the faith,” the president promised the Gershkovich family.
The Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrovaffirmed last week that representatives of the United States Government have requested the release of Gershkovich and the also American Paul Whelan in talks with a Kremlin official.
In an interview with a Russian television channel, Lavrov said that US representatives “sometimes call” Yuri Ushakovpresidential adviser specializing in foreign affairs, and they send him “the same signal” demanding the release of the two men.
Whelan, a former US Army Marine, was arrested in December 2018, held for 18 months in the Moscow Lefortovo prison and sentenced to prison for 16 years in June 2020 on espionage charges. Whelan has also denied the allegations and Washington has designated both men as “unfairly detained”.
Lavrov’s deputy, Sergei Ryabkovlast week accused the United States of exercising “pressure and threats” on Moscow over the Gershkovich case and said that Russia would ignore such tactics.
(With information from AFP, EFE and Reuters)
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