The Federal Security Service (FSB) of Russia has announced that a reporter for the American newspaper "Wall Street Journal", Ivan Gershkovich, 32 years old, in the city of Yekaterinburg in the Ural Mountains, on suspicion of espionage, the Russian news agency Interfax reported today (Thursday).
Interfax quoted a statement from the FSB as saying that the service "detained the illegal activities of the American citizen Ivan Gershkovich, born in 1991, a reporter for the Moscow desk of the American newspaper 'Wall Street Journal,' who received the approval of the Russian Foreign Ministry, and a suspect spying for the American government."
The statement also said that Gershkovich was supposed to collect information about "activities in a military defense complex" for the "American side".
However, no evidence was provided for the charge.
No response has yet been received from the "Wall Street Journal" to the report, as well as from the United States Embassy in Moscow.
A spokeswoman for Dow Jones, the publisher of the Wall Street Journal, did not return requests for comment.
Gershkovich has worked at the paper in Moscow since January 2022, and has previously reported from Russia for AFP and The Moscow Times.
Before that, he was an assistant at The New York Times in New York.
Evan Gershkovich's page in the newspaper (photo: screenshot, official website)
The reporter's Twitter account (photo: screenshot, Twitter)
Paul Whelan, an American citizen imprisoned in Russia on suspicion of espionage (Photo: Reuters)
In December, Russia released American basketball player Brittany Greiner as part of a prisoner exchange.
The deal between the countries was of one prisoner in exchange for another - the Russians received back Victor Bott, who is known as the "merchant of death".
As part of the negotiations, the Americans tried to release the former Navy man, the American Paul Whelan, who was arrested in Russia on suspicion of espionage, but without success.
Biden said in his speech: "We have also not forgotten Whelan, who is in Russia for an unjustified reason. It was not the choice of any American to bring home. Unfortunately, for reasons that are not legitimate, Russia treats the Whelan case differently than Greiner. Although we have not been able to release him yet, we are not giving up and will never We will not give up."