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Russia Concerned Over Blogger's Detention In Moldova

Eduard Bagirov
Eduard Bagirov
CHISINAU -- Russian diplomats have expressed concern over the fate of a Russian blogger detained in Chisinau on suspicion of inciting riots more than two years ago, RFE/RL's Moldovan Service reports.
Eduard Bagirov was detained in Chisinau on June 16, but Moldovan authorities did not confirm his arrest until June 27, when they said a court had denied his request to be released while an investigation is carried out.
The statement added that Bagirov is being questioned over his role in the April 2009 street violence following a contested election won by the Communist Party that left one dead and dozens injured.
In a letter to the Moldovan government that was released, the Russian Embassy quoted a media interview with Bagirov's lawyer, Adrian Matkovschi, who says his client is being held in poor conditions and denied the right to receive visits, talk to his lawyer, or see a doctor.
The lawyer also said that Bagirov is under constant "pressure and threats" from Moldovan authorities.
There have been conflicting reports in the Russian and Moldovan press about Bagirov's detention.
The Russian Embassy said last week its personnel had visited Bagirov, and he did not complain about the conditions in which he is being held.
The Moldovan Prosecutor-General's Office has not made public any details of Bagirov's alleged crimes two years ago.
It has not been officially clarified who is responsible for the postelection violence in 2009.
The current pro-Western government and the Communist opposition, which was in office in 2009, have each accused the other of "orchestrating" the riots, but neither side has produced evidence to support their positions.
Mark Tkachuk, a leading member of the Communist Party, said last week that Bagirov is being pressured by the government to confess that in 2009 he was asked by the Communists to organize violent protests.
Tkachuk did not divulge the source of this claim.