News / Europe

Russian Scientist Reportedly Released in Spy Swap with US

Multimedia

Audio
Gabe Joselow

The lawyer for a scientist imprisoned for espionage in Russia says he has been released, in what may be the first move in a spy exchange with the United States.  However, there are conflicting reports on the whereabouts of the scientist, Igor Sutyagin.

His family says his release is part of an exchange for suspected Russian agents detained last month in the United States in a high-profile case.

Neither U.S. nor Russian officials have confirmed the reports.

Sergei Markov, a deputy in the Russian State Duma from the ruling United Russia party, said he has heard the rumors of an exchange.  

He tells VOA that if such a thing occurs, it represents a kind of confession from both the United States and Russia.

"I think most important is that by exchange, both sides recognize that those arrested people - they are spies," said Sergei Markov.

Sutyagin was serving a 15-year prison sentence, after being convicted of sending classified information to a British firm that Russian authorities said was a front for U.S. intelligence.

He and his family have repeatedly denied his guilt.  His case has been championed by human rights groups who say he was unfairly persecuted by the government.

But Markov says the United States has already confirmed he was a spy.

"It was a very big shock for some of the Russian human rights activists who protected Sutyagin for many years, repeating many times that he is, you know, a scientist who is being arrested by the KGB, by Putin, Putin is oppressing science and so forth," he said.

Senior correspondent Andre de Nesnera discusses the exchange of Russian spies:


Meantime, the ten members of the alleged Russian spy ring operating in the United States are charged with conspiring to act as unregistered foreign agents.  They are accused of seeking to infiltrate U.S. policy-making circles and to gather information on U.S. political affairs.  Nine of them are also charged with money laundering.

An eleventh suspect was detained briefly in Cyprus, but went missing after being released on bail.

You May Like

In China, Mixed Signals on Ebola Controls

How authorities are monitoring at-risk individuals remains unclear, including whether there are quarantines for Chinese health workers returning from West Africa More

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Electionsi
X
October 31, 2014 4:10 AM
Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid