Wall Street Journal journalist Evan Gershkovich, who was arrested on espionage charges, has had his pre-trial detention extended by three months by a Moscow court. The extension was granted until November 30, after previously being extended on May 23. Gershkovich’s detention was initially set to end on August 30. He lost an appeal against the extension of his detention on June 22. Gershkovich has been detained in Russia since March, despite vehement denials from him, the WSJ, and the US government regarding the charges.
Gershkovich’s arrest marks the first detention of an American reporter in Russia on allegations of spying since the Cold War. This has caused concern among White House officials and further strained relations between Moscow and Washington. The US State Department has officially declared Gershkovich as wrongfully detained in Russia, and President Joe Biden has made repeated calls for his release. Biden has expressed his seriousness about pursuing a prisoner exchange to secure Gershkovich’s freedom and emphasized the ongoing efforts in this regard during a news conference in Helsinki in July.