May 03, 2023

Journalism Is No Crime


Journalism Is No Crime
Vice President Joe Biden reads over his speech on U.S.-Russia relations before an event at Moscow State University in Moscow, Russia March 10, 2011. David Lienemann, Wikimedia Commons.

The Washington Post reported that President Joe Biden held an informal meeting with the parents of Evan Gershkovich, a journalist who has been detained in Russia on charges of espionage. The meeting took place before the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner in Washington, where Biden and his wife, Jill, privately spoke with Gershkovich's parents. The content of their conversation has not been disclosed.

During a speech before the dinner, Biden expressed his commitment to bringing the Wall Street Journal reporter home, saying that the US was "working like hell."

"Journalism is not a crime," Biden said. "Evan... should be released immediately, along with every other American detained abroad." The dinner was attended by other individuals with important Russian connections, including Yulia Navalnaya and Daria Navalnaya, the wife and daughter of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, as well as basketball player Brittney Griner, who was herself just recently released from a long and unjust Russian detention. At the event, some attendees wore buttons with the words "Free Evan" printed on them.

The US State Department has labeled Gershkovich as "wrongfully detained," which could open up the possibility for an exchange. His lawyers are said to be considering this option, according to  Meduza. Gershkovich has been receiving support from major American media outlets and foreign journalists working in Moscow.

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