Journalist Evan Gershkovich, who was arrested in Russia in the case of "espionage", was not allowed into the pre-trial detention center for American diplomats. According to the statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, this is a "retaliatory measure" to the refusal of Russian journalists to issue American visas to travel to the UN Security Council together with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
“It is especially emphasized that such sabotage, aimed at preventing normal journalistic work, will not remain unanswered. In this regard, the US Embassy is informed that its request for a consular visit on May 11 this year. E. Gershkovich, an American citizen detained on charges of espionage, is rejected. Other possible response measures are currently being worked out, of which the American side will be duly notified,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
In mid-April, it became known that the United States had not issued visas to the Russian delegation to participate in events at the UN headquarters in New York on April 24–25. “The most important thing is to be sure: we won’t forget, we won’t forgive,” Lavrov said at the time, addressing propaganda media journalists who were denied visas.
After that, the diplomatic source told RIA Novosti that the United States should have no doubts that "American journalists will experience all the discomfort and inconvenience, and a similar attitude."
Gershkovich was detained in Yekaterinburg on March 30 on suspicion of espionage and collecting information constituting a "state secret." He was arrested for two months and sent to the Lefortovo pre-trial detention center in Moscow. In Yekaterinburg, the journalist was preparing material about “Putin’s chef” and the founder of PMC Wagner, Yevgeny Prigozhin, and also learned from the people of the Urals how they feel about the war against Ukraine. Gershkovich faces up to 20 years in prison. On April 18, the Moscow City Court upheld his arrest.