Moscow Court extends Evan Gershkovich’s detention 2 more months

November 28, 2023

A Moscow court on Tuesday extended the detention of American journalist Evan Gershkovich by another two months, through January 30, Russian media reported Tuesday. 

The 32-year-old reporter for the Wall Street Journal was arrested in March. Russia’s FSB security services claimed that Gershkovich, who reports for the Wall Street Journal, “was collecting classified information about the activities of one of the enterprises of the Russian military industrial complex.”

Despite the Russian Foreign Ministry and the FSB acknowledging that Gershkovich is an accredited journalist in Russia, the American has been charged with espionage, which carries a potential prison sentence in Russia of up to 20 years. 

Monday’s hearing took place behind closed doors because Russian authorities say the details of Gershkovich’s criminal case are classified. 

Both Gershkovich and the Journal deny the allegations against him. He is being held in Moscow’s notoriously brutal Lefortovo prison.

In April the U.S. State Department designated 31-year-old Gershkovich as “wrongfully detained” which shifts supervision of that person’s case to a specialized State Department section, called the Office of the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs. That department is focused on negotiating for the release of captives.

Gershkovich is the first U.S. reporter to be charged with espionage since the Cold War; in 1986 Nicholas Daniloff, a Moscow correspondent for U.S. News and World Report, was arrested by the KGB, the Soviet Union’s precursor to the FSB.

PHOTO: LinkedIn

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