Comments and statements by Foreign Ministry Spokesman

25 July 201718:04

Comment by the Information and Press Department on certain media outlets’ reporting on Viktor Ageyev’s detention in Ukraine

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We were surprised to read in some publications that Russian diplomats are allegedly not interested in the fate of Viktor Ageyev, who has been detained by Ukrainian authorities. The authors wrote that Russian representatives made just “one call to the head of the prison.” This is untrue. Russia continuously monitors the cases of all Russian citizens who have problems in Ukraine, including Mr Ageyev.

When his detention was revealed on June 27 of this year, the Russian Embassy in Ukraine sent a request to the Ukrainian side to allow a consular officer to meet with Mr Ageyev as soon as possible. Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry granted the request but the department of the Ukrainian Security Service in the Lugansk Region, which the Russian Consulate-General in Kharkov contacted according to the existing procedure, replied that the requested meeting could not be arranged earlier than on July 24 of this year because of “urgent investigative activities.” However, for some reason these “urgent investigative activities” did not prevent the Ukrainian side from inviting journalists to visit the detained Russian in order to amplify Kiev’s favourite tale about “Russian aggression in Ukraine.”  Apparently, in a fit of anti-Russian hysteria Kiev is completely ignoring the humanitarian aspect of the issue and is even making news out of Mr Ageyev’s grieving mother in order to portray itself in the best light.

By depriving Mr Ageyev of the right to consular defence, Kiev is violating the 1993 Consular Convention between the Russian Federation and Ukraine and the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations. We urge the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry to ensure strict observance of the provisions of the said conventions by the competent Ukrainian agencies and demand immediate access of consular officers to Mr Ageyev.

Russian diplomatic missions in Ukraine are in constant contact with Mr Ageyev’s attorney and are doing everything possible to protect the rights of the detained Russian citizen.

As for our media colleagues, we would like to ask them once again, before publishing such materials, to contact the Russian Foreign Ministry, which is always ready to provide all necessary explanations.

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