Moscow outraged by the arrest of journalist Marat Kasem in Riga and appealed to the UN
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Russian Ombudsman Tatyana Moskalkova called the detention of the editor-in-chief of Sputnik Lithuania an encroachment on freedom of speech. The Latvian journalist worked for several years in Moscow for the Russia Today media group.
Human Rights Ombudsman in the Russian Federation Tatiana Moskalkova appealed to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk with a request to pay attention to the detention of Marat Kasem, editor-in-chief of the Sputnik Lithuania agency. She wrote about this on Friday, January 6, in her Telegram channel.
The Ombudsman, in particular, stated that she regards the arrest of Kasem as “an attack on freedom of speech and a violation of Latvia's international obligations in the field of protecting the rights of journalists “.
“I appeal to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights with a request to pay attention to this egregious fact and take measures within the framework of his mandate to protect the rights of Marat Kasem,” Moskalkova stressed.
According to her, the Latvian special services “without no explanations” accused the editor-in-chief of the information portal “of spying for Russia”.
The detention of a journalist in Riga: what happened?
Yesterday, January 5, it became known that on January 3, the Latvian State Security Service detained Marat Kasem, editor-in-chief of the Russian propaganda portal Sputnik Lithuania, in Riga. The court chose a measure of restraint for him in the form of arrest.
A criminal case was opened against a Latvian journalist because of the violation of sanctions established by the UN Security Council (Part 1 of Article 84 of the Criminal Code of Latvia ). If Kasem's guilt is proven, he faces up to 5 years in prison.
According to Moskalkova, he is now in the Riga Central Prison.
Kasem is a citizen of Latvia, but in For several years he has been living and working in Moscow in the Russian media group Rossiya Segodnya, which includes the Sputnik Lithuania agency. This information resource has regularly discredited the activities of the country and its partners.
On December 28, the Latvian Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs decided not to revoke visas for employees of the Russian Dozhd TV channel, which had previously had its license revoked. Having studied the visas of Dozhd employees, the department concluded that journalists can continue to live and work in the country.