Russian court extends detention of US reporter Gershkovich

A Russian court said on Tuesday it had extended the detention of Evan Gershkovich, a Wall Street Journal reporter who is awaiting trial on espionage charges he denies, until Jan. 30, 2024, Reuters reports.

Gershkovich, a U.S. citizen, was detained by the Federal Security Service (FSB) on March 29 in the Urals city of Yekaterinburg on charges of espionage that carry up to 20 years in prison.

"The court ruled to extend the term of detention of Gershkovich, accused of a crime under Article 276 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, for up to 10 months, that is, until January 30, 2024," Moscow's Lefortovo district court said.

Gershkovich denies the charges. He is the first U.S. journalist to be detained on spy charges in Russia since the Cold War.

Russia said Gershkovich was caught "red-handed" while the FSB, the main successor to the Soviet-era KGB, said he was trying to obtain military secrets.

The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones say that Gershkovich was simply doing his job in Russia and deny the espionage charges. The Journal and Dow have repeatedly demanded that Russia release him, to no avail.

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