The Media Freedom Coalition Executive Group has released a statement on the detention of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich

The Executive Group of the Media Freedom Coalition strongly condemns the Russian Federation for the detention of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich. The detention of journalists under the guise of espionage charges is very concerning and undermines the basic principles of democracy and rule of law.

Freedom of expression is a fundamental human right that is protected by international law; it includes the right to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas of all kinds, irrespective of borders. Journalists play a crucial role in holding governments and powerful people and institutions to account, while informing the public about matters of public interest. It is imperative that they are able to work independently and without fear of being labeled as spies.

We condemn the Russian Federation’s move to silence journalists and use its authority to intimidate or harass them. Russia must comply with its international human rights commitments and not abuse its power to suppress critical reporting.

We call on the Russian Federation to release immediately Evan Gershkovich, along with all others it has unjustly detained.

Published 11 April 2023