5 Apr 2023 20:29

Blinken says has no doubt reporter Gershkovich wrongfully detained in Russia

BRUSSELS. April 5 (Interfax) -The detention of The Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich in Russia has been wrongful, and the U.S. Department of State is seeking to attach a formal status to this conclusion, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Wednesday.

"In my own mind, there is no doubt that he is being wrongfully detained by Russia, which is exactly what I said to Foreign Minister Lavrov, when I spoke to him over the weekend," Blinken said at a news conference in Brussels.

He noted that he had called for freeing the journalist but said it required acting in line with a "formal process."

In Gershkovich's situation, the U.S. State Department is "working through the determination of wrongful detention," which would give this agency and other U.S. federal agencies more instruments for further actions. The U.S. State Department is acting thoughtfully but urgently in addressing this problem, he said.

Washington also intends to tighten measures against those countries that, in the U.S. authorities' view, wrongfully detain U.S. citizens, Blinken said.