Russia has demanded the United States release accused foreign agent Maria Butina, a Russian citizen, dismissing the “trumped-up charges” against her.
“We are outraged by the pressure that the American authorities are exerting on Russian citizen Maria Butina, who was arrested in the U.S. last summer on trumped-up charges,” Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, said Wednesday.
“Once more, her detention terms have been toughened. She is in solitary confinement for 22 hours per day. Ms. Butina is not receiving proper medical care. We consider this an attempt to intimidate and break her down ahead of the court hearing – I should note once again on a fabricated case – scheduled for Dec. 19.”
Butina was arrested earlier this year after allegedly attempting to organize lines of communication between members of conservative political organizations in the U.S. and Russian officials.
“We will continue demanding the release of Ms. Butina, who is a victim of this blatant outrage,” Zakharova said before blasting President Donald Trump’s administration and other American officials who have criticized Russia for capturing and detaining several Ukrainian soldiers.
“If our American partners think they can comment on the detention of people who violated Russia’s state border, they should start by commenting [on] the situation around the political prisoner held in their country,” she said.
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