US Journalist Expelled from Russia for 1st Time Since Cold War
Russia has expelled a US journalist for the first time since the end of the Cold War.
Russian authorities claim the move has been prompted by a violation of visa rules.
David Satter, 66, who has written several books on Russia and the Soviet Union, told CNN that he traveled to Ukraine to renew his Russian visa on Christmas Day but was told by an embassy official that his application had been denied.
The official told Satter that his presence in Russia was deemed undesirable, the reporter and historian told CNN, according to RIA Novosti.
The move to deny Satter admittance to Russia will likely provoke speculation about attempts by the government to limit negative coverage on events in the country, although officials have suggested the issue was related to bureaucratic issues.
The RAPSI legal news agency cited a Moscow district court as saying Satter was barred from entering Russia under a November 29 ruling on a violation of visa regulations and fined 5,000 rubles ( USD 180).
Satter, a former Financial Times and Wall Street Journal correspondent, has since September worked as an adviser to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. He had also been reporting and providing commentary to the outlet's Russian service. Satter’s business visa apparently did not give him the right to work as a journalist in Russia, however.
Satter was told that he was due to leave Russia within five days after the court’s ruling. He did not appeal the decision.
The US Embassy in Moscow has been informed of the move, which comes just weeks before the Sochi Winter Olympics.