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Russia demands immediate release of Lifenews journalists in Ukraine

May 19, 2014, 15:08 UTC+3 GENT: LIFENEWS JOURNALISTS ARE IN UKRAINE ON THE TERRITORY OF A MILITARY UNIT
Russian journalists are accused of terrorism
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov

© EPA/FELIPE TRUEBA

MOSCOW, May 19./ITAR-TASS/. Russia has demanded immediate release for journalists from Russian LifeNews television channel, detained in Ukraine and accused of terrorism, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday after talks with Slovakian counterpart Miroslav Lajcak.

“We are concerned about the fact that reporters suffer during warfare carried out with the participation of combat forces, with the use of radicals and extremists, gunmen from the (radical) Right Sector movement and other groups,” Lavrov said.

“Very often they are detained and face made-up demands that don’t fit within generally recognised rules. The latest case refers to two journalists from LifeNews television channel,” Russia's top diplomat said.

“When we received information that they had been detained, were on the territory of a military unit and were accused of terrorism, we immediately engaged our channels,” Lavrov said.

“I spoke to Swiss President Didier, OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, urging him to use his influence and powers to achieve their immediate release,” he added, referring to the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

"Our OSCE ambassador also made a respective move,” Lavrov said, adding that the office of the OSCE representative on freedom of the media had been informed. The Russian embassy in Kiev had also raised the matter.

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