US reporter arrested in Russia meets with lawyers

Russia Reporter Arrested
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre avoided definitely saying whether Evan Gershkovich, the <i>Wall Street Reporter</i> currently being detained in Russia, had ever worked for the U.S. government. (AP)

US reporter arrested in Russia meets with lawyers

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The reporter from the Wall Street Journal who was arrested in Russia on espionage charges last week met with his lawyers on Tuesday, who said he was in good health.

Evan Gershkovich is being held in a pretrial detention center at the Lefortovo prison until May 29, where the journalist stands accused of spying on behalf of the United States. He has filed an appeal while his outlet and the Biden administration have denounced the charges.

US CONDEMNS RUSSIA’S ARREST OF WALL STREET JOURNAL REPORTER

“We are encouraged that Evan’s lawyers, retained by Dow Jones, were able to meet with him in prison today. Evan’s health is good, and he is grateful for the outpouring of support from around the world. We continue to call for his immediate release,” Emma Tucker, the editor-in-chief, said in an email.

“The legal avenue is one of several avenues we are working to advocate for Evan’s release. We continue to work with the White House, State Department and relevant U.S. government officials to secure Evan’s release,” Tucker said.

State Department officials are also trying to get consular access to Gershkovich “very, very hard, and yet we’ve still not been able to do that,” national security council coordinator John Kirby told reporters on Monday.

The Biden administration is preparing to declare him wrongfully detained, according to CNN, which cited two unnamed U.S. officials.

The designation, which the newspaper reported on Tuesday will happen in the coming days, will put his case under the special presidential envoy for hostage affairs while opening the possibility for additional resources to be directed at securing his release.

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The Federal Security Service said in a statement last Thursday that it had arrested Gershkovich, claiming that he was “acting on the instructions of the American side, collected information constituting a state secret about the activities of one of the enterprises of the Russian military-industrial complex.”

Biden administration officials have rebuked the arrest and called for the journalist’s release, including during a conversation over the weekend between Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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