2 Russian journalists arrested for allegedly working for Navalny group

A journalist for the Russian edition of Forbes magazine, Sergei Mingazov, was detained on charges of spreading false information about the Russian military, his lawyer said Friday.

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Gabov and Karelin are accused of preparing materials for a YouTube channel run by Navalny’s Foundation for Fighting Corruption, which has been outlawed by Russian authorities. Navalny died in an Arctic penal colony in February.

Gabov, who was detained in Moscow, was a freelance producer who had worked for multiple organisations, the court press service said.

Karelin, who has dual citizenship with Israel, was detained on Friday in Russia’s northern Murmansk region.

Karelin, 41, has worked for a number of outlets, including for Associated Press. He was a cameraman for German media outlet Deutsche Welle until the Kremlin banned the outlet from operating in Russia in February 2022.

“The Associated Press is very concerned by the detention of Russian video journalist Sergey Karelin,” the AP said in a statement. “We are seeking additional information.”


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Russia’s crackdown on dissent is aimed at opposition figures, journalists, activists, members of the LGBTQ community, and ordinary Russians critical of the Kremlin. A number of journalists have been jailed in relation to their coverage of Navalny, including Antonina Favorskaya, who remains in pre-trial detention at least until May 28 following a hearing last month.

Favorskaya was detained and accused by Russian authorities of taking part in an “extremist organisation” by posting on the social media platforms of Navalny’s Foundation. She covered Navalny’s court hearings for years and filmed the last video of Navalny before he died in the penal colony.

Kira Yarmysh, Navalny’s spokeswoman, said that Favorskaya did not publish anything on the Foundation’s platforms and suggested that Russian authorities had targeted her because she was doing her job as a journalist.

Evan Gershkovich, a 32-year-old American reporter for The Wall Street Journal, is awaiting trial on espionage charges at Moscow’s notorious Lefortovo Prison. Both Gershkovich and his employer have vehemently denied the charges.

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Gershkovich was detained in March 2023 while on a reporting trip and has spent over a year in jail; authorities have not detailed what, if any, evidence they have to support the espionage charges.

The US government has declared Gershkovich wrongfully detained, with officials accusing Moscow of using the journalist as a pawn for political ends.

The Russian government has also cracked down on opposition figures. One prominent activist, Vladimir Kara-Murza, was sentenced to 25 years.

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