Wall Street Journal reporter detained in Russia on espionage charges

Wall Street Journal reporter detained in Russia on espionage charges

New York Times reporter Michael Schwirtz joined ‘Fox & Friends First’ to discuss the detainment of his friend Evan Gershkovich and growing calls on U.S. officials to secure the release of Paul Whelan. #FoxNews

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Secretary of State Anthony blinken Demanding that Russia immediately free Wall Street Journal reporter Evangerskovic who was detained last week On Espionage allegations blinken also Renewing calls to release another Imprisoned American Paul Whelan but Russia's foreign Ministry is still Defending yoskovic's arrest saying the Journalist was caught red-handed while Trying to obtain secret information in The light of the established facts of The illegal activities of the U.S Citizen his further fate will be Determined by the court New York Times Reporter Michael Schwartz is a friend of Evans and he joins us now Michael thank You for being here what was your Reaction when you heard what happened to Evan I think it was a mixture of shock and uh And confusion you know all of us uh uh No Evan who has been a reporter for the Wall Street Journal for many many years In Moscow he's done Stellar work he's One of the few reporters who have gone Back to Russia uh since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022 and has been Doing incredible work since then under Increasingly difficult conditions and For uh uh the Russian foreign Ministry And the Russian government accuse him of Espionage is just absurd Michael do you Truly believe that whatever Evan was

Working on is what was behind his arrest You know I can't say that I know exactly What Evan was working on Um at the moment that he was detained But I uh think whatever that was was Beside the point Uh Russian has a History of uh detaining people detaining Americans uh for use uh in its own sort Of geopolitical policies he uses Bargaining chips uh with the West with The United States and so whatever it was It was detained for it wasn't because of The work that he was doing yeah any Sense as to what he could have been Caught quote unquote red-handed doing or Is this just another example of Vladimir Putin's hostage diplomacy that we've Seen play out on the world stage for a While now I have no idea what uh um evidence uh The Russian government plans to use uh To make its point they haven't revealed Any so far Um and again Um Evan has been in that country for Years doing reporting he publishes his Reports his most recent report uh was Published uh on March 28th which I think Which is days before his arrest Um and so uh there's there's nothing There's nothing to these allegations the Russian government has provided no Information about these allegations They've kept him hidden away

Um in a in a prison in Moscow without Providing any information about his Condition or what it is uh that he's up Against so what did you make of the State department demanding the release Of not only Evan but Paul Whalen the Release from prison do you think the United States carries any weight with This I think the United States is going to Have to open up uh whatever uh Avenues It has to communicate with the Russian Government and try and negotiate the Release of uh of both Evan and Paul Whalen uh which I know they've been Trying in Paul's case I know they've Been trying to do uh for years now Um and if you'll recall there was Another case of the basketball player Brittany Greiner uh from uh earlier uh Last year uh and her release was Negotiated and so unfortunately we're Seeing this story repeat itself again in Russia with the Russian government Seizing Americans and trying to use them As bargaining trips Evan of course works For the Wall Street Journal here's the Wall Street Journal editor-in-chief on The call between the United States and Russia Lincoln spoke to his counterpart today Is hugely reassuring to us we haven't Been able to get any messages to him we Haven't heard anything from him there's

Been very little official information What the Russian authorities are saying Is is utter nonsense Michael knowing Russia as well as you do How does this all end It it's really hard to say at this point In the past uh we know that Russia has Uh insisted on carrying out a Prosecution Um and since this is an Espionage case According to the Russian authorities This prosecution uh on a trial will be Held behind closed doors we'll probably Know very little about it Um uh and uh they'll seek a conviction You know he's facing up to 20 years in Prison Um under the charges that he's facing And uh what kind of negotiations might Be going on but behind the scenes Between the United States and the Russian government is uh is going to be Unknown to us and so you know Unfortunately we're going to have to Wait and see he's been put in pre-child Attention until May Um at which point uh uh I can only Assume there's going to be some kind of Uh trial or prosecution down the road But uh I'm afraid that you know we have A long way ahead of us and and Evan's Going to be stuck in that prison for a Long time I fear that you are right Thoughts and prayers are of course with

Evan because people like Evan people Like you Michael you're doing the work To let us know what is happening in Other parts of the world it's important Work it's Brave work and we appreciate What you do let's get Evan home Michael Schwartz thank you for your time this Morning sir we appreciate it thanks so Much I appreciate it

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