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State Department Designates Reporter Evan Gershkovich as 'Wrongfully Detained' by Russia


This means the reporter's case will be handled by the Office of the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, giving the government additional resources to secure the release of Gershkovich, accused of espionage and arrested in March.

By Megan Lebowitz -

NBC News

Secretary of State Antony Blinken formally declared on Monday that journalist Evan Gershkovich is being wrongfully detained in Russia.

This official classification means that the case of The Wall Street Journal reporter will be handled by the State Department's Office of the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, which will provide the US government with additional resources to secure his release.

[Friends of US reporter detained in Russia praise his reporting commitment: "Journalism is not a crime"]

Office envoy Roger Carstens will work to get Gershkovich released and contact with his family maintained.

"Journalism is not a crime

," Vedant Patel, a State Department spokesman, said in a statement Monday.

"We condemn the Kremlin's continued crackdown on independent voices in Russia and its ongoing war on the truth."

Journalist Evan Gershkovich, on July 24, 2021.Dimitar Dilkoff / AFP via Getty Images

Blinken said last week that he considered Gershkovich detained unjustly, but now the State Department has formally designated him.

The Wall Street Journal was the first to report on the decision.

The newspaper has rejected the charges against the reporter.

[Russia detains an American journalist from The Wall Street Journal on charges of espionage]

The United States asked Russia to release both Gershkovich, detained at the end of March, and businessman and former Marine Paul Whelan.

Both were

jailed on suspicion of espionage.

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2023-04-11

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