14:09 GMT +323 May 2018
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    Journalist Kirill Vyshinsky, the director of Russian state news agency RIA Novosti Ukraine, attends a preliminary court hearing in Kherson, Ukraine May 17, 2018

    Ukraine Prosecution Demands 60 Day Detention for RIA Novosti Ukraine Journalist

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    Russian Journalist Kirill Vyshinsky Detained in Kiev (26)
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The Ukrainian prosecution demanded a pre-trial detention of 60 days for RIA Novosti Ukraine portal head Kirill Vyshinsky, who was detained in Kiev, his lawyer Andriy Domansky told Sputnik on Thursday.

    “A detention of 60 days without bail,” Domansky said.

    Vyshinsky himself said at a court hearing that all actions of the Ukrainian authorities in his respect had been "planned in advance."

    “The way the investigation took place and what was taking place simultaneously with it – all of this proved that everything had been planned in advance. At the time when searches in my apartment were underway, a spokesperson of the Security Service of Ukraine had already announced my detention, a press conference, where not only charges were voiced, was already being held,” Vyshinsky told the court, as aired by the Rossiya 24 broadcaster.

    Call For Rallies in Support of Vyshinsky

    Margarita Simonyan, the editor-in-chief of Sputnik and RT broadcaster, made a call on Thursday for participation in an upcoming rally in support of Kirill Vyshinsky.

    "Kirill Vyshinsky, our colleague and friend is now detained by the SBU. He could face up to 15 years in prison on unsubstantiated treason charges. Other our reporters are being questioned, their places are being searched. It is hard to believe that such a wild hunt for journalists, who just perform their duties, is possible, especially in Europe. But it is happening. Come to the Ukrainian embassy in Moscow, let's support our colleagues and friends," Simonyan told Sputnik.

    The two-hour rally, which has already been authorized by Moscow authorities, is expected to start at 2 p.m. local time (11:00 GMT) on Friday near the Ukrainian embassy.

    Head of RIA Novosti Ukraine news portal Kirill Vyshinsky was detained in Kiev on Tuesday. On the same day, the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) broke into the office of RIA Novosti Ukraine in Kiev.

    READ MORE: Expert Explains What's Next After Kiev's Crackdown on RIA Novosti Journalists

    Rossiya Segodnya Director General Dmitry Kiselev has demanded that the Ukrainian authorities free Vyshinsky immediately and end their persecution of the media.

    Earlier on Wednesday, Human Rights Watch Europe and Central Asia Division Deputy Director Rachel Denber urged the Ukrainian authorities to immediately clarify evidence to substantiate the criminal accusations against Vyshinsky. For his part, OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Desir urged Kiev to refrain from imposing "unnecessary limitations" on foreign journalists that impact the free flow of information and press freedom.

    Russia's International News Agency Rossiya Segodnya has launched a Twitter hashtag #TruthNotTreason in support of RIA Novosti Ukraine news portal head Kirill Vyshinsky, arrested in Ukraine.

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    Russian Journalist Kirill Vyshinsky Detained in Kiev (26)

    Related:

    SBU Conducts Searches in RIA Novosti Ukraine Offices, Detains Journalists
    Council of Europe Journalist Protection Platform Registers Alert on Ukraine
    EU Aware of RIA Novosti Ukraine Journalist Detention
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    journalist, RIA Novosti Ukraine, SBU, Kirill Vyshinsky, Ukraine
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