The Russian police have dropped the charges against journalist Ivan Golunov, the reporter whom they accused of dealing drugs. Reuters reported this June 11, sharing the details of his arrest and release.
''Golunov, a 36-year-old journalist known for exposing corruption among Moscow city officials, was detained by police last Thursday and accused of dealing drugs, an allegation he flatly denied', wrote the news agency. 'Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev said the criminal case against Golunov was being dropped due to a lack of evidence of any wrongdoing on his part. Golunov was freed from house arrest hours later. After having the electronic bracelet on his ankle removed, he walked out of a police station in central Moscow to be met by hundreds of journalists who applauded him''.
The EU immediately praised the decision to release Golunov, reiterating that media freedom in Russia still 'remains worrying', as Spokesperson for EU Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Maja Kocijancic put it.
The public support of the opposition journalist turned to be solid and numerous. ''Before the police backed down, nearly 25,000 people had signed up to a Facebook page expressing their intention to take part in a protest march on Wednesday in solidarity with Golunov (...) The three leading daily newspapers - Vedomosti, Kommersant and RBK — all carried the same headline on Monday in a rare show of solidarity: “I am/We are Ivan Golunov' '', Reuters wrote.
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