US protests spying suspect’s treatment in Russian jail

Politics
Paul Whelan

FILE In this file photo taken on Friday, May 24, 2019, Paul Whelan, a former U.S. Marine, who was arrested in Moscow at the end of last year, waits for a hearing in a court in Moscow, Russia. An American man kept behind bars in Russia on spying charges has appealed to U.S. President Donald Trump for help. Whelan, who also holds British, Irish and Canadian citizenship, appealed to Trump in a Moscow court on Thursday, June 20, 2019 to intervene in his case and “defend” him. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, File)

MOSCOW (AP) — The U.S. Embassy in Moscow says that it has officially protested the reported mistreatment of a U.S. national who is kept in jail on spying charges.

The U.S. Embassy said in a statement on Wednesday that it has sent a note of protest to the Russian foreign ministry, asking it to investigate the allegations that Paul Whelan has been mistreated while in custody and that his safety is ensured.

Whelan, who also holds British, Irish and Canadian citizenship, was arrested in a hotel room in Moscow at the end of December and charged with espionage, which carries up to 20 years in prison.

The former U.S. Marine, who denies the charges, has publicly complained of poor conditions in prison and said his life is in danger.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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