MOSCOW, October 25. /TASS/. Russia’s human rights commissioner Tatyana Moskalkova hopes that after Maria Butina’s return home from the United States joint efforts by the bodies of power and the public at large will secure the return to Russia of other compatriots in trouble in other countries.
"The whole country followed the situation. Many pressed for Maria’s release," Moskalkova told the media on Friday. She said she had contacted all international organizations, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, the OSCE and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to raise the issue of Butina’s release from custody and to put an end to prosecution on framed-up charges. Also, Moskalkova talked to the US ambassador in Russia and asked him to convey the public’s concerns to the authorities of the United States."
"Thanks to joint efforts by the bodies of power, human rights activists and the public Maria Butina is returning home. I hope that joint efforts will secure the return home of all of our fellow citizens who are in trouble abroad," Moskalkova stated.
Butina, 30, was charged with conspiracy to act as a foreign agent in the United States. US special services argued that Butina had indulged in political lobbying without being registered at the Department of Justice. On April 26, Butina was sentenced to 18 months in prison. The jail term included the period she had spent in custody before trial. The US Department of State said Butina on Friday would fly from Miami, Florida, to Moscow, where she will arrive on Saturday morning.
Earlier, Moskalkova had repeatedly addressed the US authorities to release Butina and deport jailed Russian citizens Viktor Bout and Konstantin Yaroshenko to Russia.