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Russian Foreign Minister Says No Political Component In Satter Case

American journalist David Satter
American journalist David Satter
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says there is no political background in the situation of U.S. journalist David Satter, who has been barred from entering Russia.

The Interfax news agency reports that Lavrov said in Moscow on January 21 that Satter's "status was illegal for several days" and the decision not to renew Satter's visa and ban him from Russia for five years was made in line with Russian law.

Satter, 66, had been living and working in Russia since September as an adviser to RFE/RL's Russian Service.

He left Russia for Kyiv in early December and reapplied for a Russian visa.

He says he was told his request was approved but a Russian official in Kyiv later said his presence in Russia was "undesirable."

Satter was a Moscow correspondent for the "Financial Times" and "The Wall Street Journal" in the 1970s and 1980s.

Based on reporting by Interfax