Sunday, February 5, 2023

Former US Marine begins hunger strike in Russia for treatment

A former US Marine serving a nine-year prison sentence in Russia has begun a hunger strike to protest his imprisonment and alleged violations of his rights, his family said, a statement Russian prison officials said was untrue.

Trevor Reid, a University of Texas student, was convicted last year in 2019 of endangering the lives of two policemen in Moscow under the influence of alcohol. He denied the allegation and Washington called his trial “theatre of the absurd”.

His family said in a late statement, “We have received a report from a lawyer that Trevor has begun a hunger strike to protest his arbitrary detention and several more major violations of his basic human rights and his rights under Russian law by the Russian authorities.” Done.” Monday.

Regional prison officials in Mordovia, where Reid is being held, denied that his rights were being abused or that he was on hunger strike. “He is eating according to the daily schedule,” he said in a statement to Reuters.

The family said that Reed was being kept in a small room with a hole in the floor for a toilet, that he was not allowed to talk to his parents on the phone for 116 days, and that he had to get books. was not being allowed or letters.

The US embassy in Moscow did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Kremlin declined to comment.

Reid and Paul Whelan, an American jailed in Russia on charges of espionage he denied, have been touted as potential candidates for a prisoner swap between Moscow and Washington.

Whelan’s lawyer told Reuters on Monday that a deal had been negotiated regarding his client, but they had stalled.

Reid’s family said in a statement that they met with officials in Washington last month and urged them to reach an agreement with Russia to release Russians in US prisons.

Russian media have sentenced Konstantin Yaroshenko, a pilot to 20 years in prison for conspiracy to smuggle cocaine, and Viktor Bout, a Russian arms smuggler who is serving a 25-year prison sentence as potential candidates for a deal .

Reid’s family said, “Both Russian men who have been projected by the Russian media as potential targets of ‘business’ have served more than half their long sentences and are now senior citizens who are involved in ‘business’ with Americans.” will not pose any threat to the


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