French Citizen Detained in Russia Amid Espionage Allegations

A Moscow court ordered Laurent Vinatier, a French citizen, to remain in jail pending an investigation on espionage charges. Vinatier was accused of failing to register as a foreign agent while collecting data on Russian military activities. His detainment follows rising tensions between Russia and France.

PTI | Moscow | Updated: 08-06-2024 14:40 IST | Created: 08-06-2024 14:40 IST
French Citizen Detained in Russia Amid Espionage Allegations
  • Country:
  • Russian Federation

In a striking development, a court in Moscow on Friday ordered French citizen Laurent Vinatier to be detained pending investigation and trial over espionage allegations. Vinatier, apprehended on Thursday, faces accusations of gathering sensitive military information in Russia without registering as a 'foreign agent'—a criminal offense under Russian law.

The arrest comes as tensions between Moscow and Paris escalate following recent remarks by French President Emmanuel Macron about potentially deploying troops in Ukraine. Vinatier, who works as an adviser for the Geneva-based Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, admitted his guilt in court, citing ignorance of the registration requirement.

Human rights activists have criticized this law, asserting that it is part of a broader Kremlin crackdown on media freedom and political dissent. Vinatier's case adds to a growing list of high-profile espionage arrests, including Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich and U.S.-Russian journalist Alsu Kurmasheva.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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