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International Federation of Journalists looks into Russian reporter’s detention in Ukraine

The federation is doing research concerning the charges against Anna Kurbatova

BRUSSELS, August 30./TASS/. The Brussels-based International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) checks reports about Russian journalist Anna Kurbatova’s detention in Ukraine and charges against her, IFJ’s Esti Ortiz told TASS on Wednesday.

"We are currently in touch with our unions in Ukraine and Russia and they both have confirmed she has been detained and not abducted by the SBU. We are doing some thoughtful research - especially concerning the charges against her - before having any official say," he said.

One of the latest reports by Anna Kurbatova was about deportation of two Spanish journalists on August 24. The IFJ denounced this fact in a special statement, asking the Spanish authorities to demand official explanations from Kiev.

Channel 1, which is Russia’s state-run nationwide television channel, reported earlier in the day that its journalist Anna Kurbatova was abducted in Kiev on Wednesday. It is known that Anna Kurbatova, 29, has repeatedly received threats over her coverage of events in Ukraine.

On August 26 she was blacklisted on the Myrotvorets (Peacemaker) website outlawed in Russia. Anna was accused of biased coverage of the military parade timed for Ukraine’s Independence Day and of anti-Ukrainian propaganda.

Later on Wednesday, the Ukrainian Security Service said Russia’s Anna Kurbatova will be deported to Russia. "At the moment all necessary documents are being readied for her official expulsion," Ukrainian security service SBU spokeswoman Yelena Gitlyanskaya said in Facebook.

"The same will happen to everybody who may take the liberty of defaming Ukraine," she added.

Kurbatova was born in Russia’s southern city of Stavropol. Her latest seven reports aired on Channel 1 concerned the situation in Ukraine. On the eve of her detention she filmed a report on the persecution of journalists in Ukraine. Several days before that Channel 1 broadcasted her report about the military parade held on Ukraine’s Independence Day. In the report, she called the parade "the march of dependence" adding that the date was "a sad holiday". According to the journalist, Kiev has returned "to the turbulent 90s," while Ukraine "is absolutely dependent on America and Europe".