IFJ calls on Russia to free Sushchenko
Journalist arrived in Russia from Paris and was arrested the next day
The world's largest organization of media professionals International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its subsidiaries in Europe (EFJ) urged the Russian Federation to release Ukrainian journalist Roman Sushchenko detained on September 30.
This is stated in a message on the IFJ website.
He was on leave and had gone to Moscow for private reasons. He was detained the day he arrived. His wife, who had remained in France, phoned relatives after her husband had not been in touch for two days.
Ukrinform dismissed any accusations of ‘spying’ as spurious and called on journalists and the international community to help secure his release.
“Roman is a respected professional journalist with a strong reputation” said Sergiy Tomilenko Acting Chairman of the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine (NUJU), an IFJ affiliate. “Hopefully widespread attention to the obvious absurdity of the "espionage" case can help Roman go free”.
IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said: “This arrest not only breaches all international norms but also serves to undermine media freedom. It follows a worrying pattern of attacks on Ukrainian journalists and we urge the authorities to free Mr Sushchenko”.
“The authorities must release him immediately and let him to his family safely”, stressed the IFJ General Secretary.
As it was reported earlier, Lefortovo court in Moscow charged Ukrainian reporter Roman Sushchenko of ‘espionage’ and arrested him for two months. Ukrainian Intelligence in its term denied his involvement.
Mark Feygin, the famous Russian lawyer and human rights activist, would protect Roman Sushchenko in court.
The Political Consultant Taras Berezovets said Russia may use the Ukrainian journalist Roman Sushchenko like the VIP-hostage in order to exchange for some high-ranking terrorist leaders.
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