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Russian Ministry Accuses Foreign Ministry of Lying About Blinken-Lavrov Conversation

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Moscow, March 3 – Maria, a spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, said that US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, during a short conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in New Delhi, did not raise the issue of Paul Whelan, who was convicted in the Russian Federation, which is nothing but lies. said Zakharova.
Earlier, Blinken spoke about the details of a short conversation with Lavrov on the sidelines of the G20 ministerial meeting in India. In particular, he called on Russia to return to the implementation of the START treaty and raised the case of the American Paul Whelan, who was convicted in the Russian Federation on charges of espionage, and called on Russia to stop the special operation. and start a diplomatic dialogue.
Whelan was arrested in Moscow on December 28, 2018, during what the FSB said was an espionage operation. The defense claims that the American was a victim of provocation: he was given a flash card, on which he allegedly expected to see a photo from a tourist trip to Sergiev Posad. The accused himself stated in the last word that he was not involved in espionage. He was sentenced to 16 years in prison and serve his sentence in a colony in Mordovia.

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Whelan and his family are counting on his return to the United States in an exchange, but he was not included in the Russian Viktor Bout exchange deal with American basketball player Brittney Griner, which took place earlier in December.

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