A Russian court on Tuesday extended the jail sentence of imprisoned US reporter Evan Gershkovich by three months, Russian news agencies reported.
What we know about the Gershkovich hearing
Moscow says the pretrial investigation was held behind closed doors because of the sensitivity of the case. Court documents have not been released either.
Gershkovich’s parents were at the Lefortovo court in Moscow for the hearing, according to a CNN reporter who was present.
State Department spokesperson Matt Miller in a briefing said representatives from the US embassy in Moscow were also in attendance but were unable to speak with Gershkovich.
His appeal against a decision to keep him behind bars as he waits for a trial start date was denied in April.
US calls for Gershkovich’s immediate release
White House national security spokesperson John Kirby on Tuesday reiterated his calls for Gershkovich to be released.
“He shouldn’t be detained at all. Journalism is not a crime. He needs to be released immediately,” Kirby told CNN.
“We’re still going to work very, very hard to see if we can get him home with his family where he belongs.”
Kirby also said the United States wants consular access to Gershkovich, who became the first American to be detained in Russia on spying charges since the Cold War.
He has been only allowed visits from his Russian lawyers so far.