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Kosovo Expels Russian, Ukrainian Journalists

Kosovo police said they expelled two journalists on September 16, a Russian and a Ukrainian, who did not have entry visas.

They "had neither visas nor entry stamps for the Republic of Kosovo," a police press release said, adding that the reporters had been escorted to a northern border crossing with Serbia.

Police mentioned only the initials of the journalists. Press reports said they were Russian reporter Oksana Sazonova and her Ukrainian colleague, cameraman Sergei Belous.

Both were working for Russian media outlets in Belgrade.

They were detained on September 15 in southern Kosovo on suspicion of illegally entering the country and were taken to Pristina, where they were held in a center for foreigners before their expulsion.

Sazonova and Belous were reportedly working on a documentary about Serbian Orthodox churches in Kosovo.

They were also fined 200 euros each and banned from re-entering Kosovo for the next five years.

Kosovo applies a visa regime to Russia and all other countries that oppose its independence from Serbia, which it unilaterally declared in 2008.

Based on reporting by AFP, TASS, and Interfax