02:46 GMT +318 February 2018
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    Russia demands release of suspect in Sweden spy scandal

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    "[Russia] demands the immediate and unconditional release of Andrei Zamyatnin from imprisonment," ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said.

    MOSCOW, March 31 (RIA Novosti) - Russia is demanding the immediate and unconditional release of a man arrested in Sweden on suspicion of spying, a Foreign Ministry official said Friday.

    "[Russia] demands the immediate and unconditional release of Andrei Zamyatnin from imprisonment," ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said, adding that the Russian Embassy was maintaining regular contacts with the detainee and helping him cope with "the injustice."

    Police detained 30-year-old Zamyatnin, working as an assistant at an agricultural university in Uppsala researching plant viruses, on February 15, and a court has ruled three times since then to remand him in custody. The next hearing has been scheduled for April 12.

    Sweden's counter-espionage service (SAPO) said the researcher was being held on suspicion of spying for a certain country, but is still refusing to unveil either details of the investigation or which country Zamyatnin was allegedly spying for.

    Earlier, a local newspaper quoted Swedish Chief Prosecutor Tomas Lindstrand as saying that Zamyatnin's activities could have a negative effect on Sweden's security and defense capabilities.

    Kamynin also said that the "persistent inhumanity of the Swedish authorities" could damage relations between the countries, echoing sentiments voiced Thursday by Russia's ambassador to Stockholm.

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