Diplomatic Briefing

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Newsline: Russian Embassy Accuses Washington of Kidnapping

The Russian Embassy to the United States has accused Washington of “kidnapping” a man accused of cyber-fraud. Yury Martyshev, a Russian citizen, is being detained in a prison in Alexandria, Virginia, after he was extradited from Latvia last week, the state-run TASS news agency reported, citing a source at the Russian Embassy to the U.S. Martyshev is being held on charges of cyber fraud, after supposedly obtaining information of bank cardholders, the report says. The Russian Embassy in Washington accused the United States in a Facebook post of breaching a 1999 bilateral agreement between the two countries. “We consider this arrest as another case of kidnapping of a Russian citizen by the U.S. authorities in violation of the current bilateral agreement on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters,” the post said. This is not the first time Russia has accused the United States of kidnapping. Russian officials made similar accusations in the case of arms dealer Viktor Bout and attempted drug smuggler Konstantin Yaroshenko. In 2015, the Russian Foreign Ministry went as far as to issue a warning to Russians traveling aboard, saying the U.S. authorities were on the “hunt” for Russians all over the world. On Friday, U.S. President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin are set to have their first face-to-face meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hamburg.



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