Russian Foreign Ministry to continue attempts to return Russians jailed in U.S. to Russia

Russia will be seeking the return of the Russian citizens jailed in the U.S. to Russia, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said at a parliamentary hearing on Monday.

Ryabkov said Russia intends to continue defending the interests of Russian citizens jailed in the U.S., including Viktor Bout, Konstantin Yaroshenko, the Russians recently detained in Texas, and the Russian citizen who has been jailed in the Guantanamo prison for ten years.

Ryabkov said the Russian citizen who is now in Guantanamo was detained in Pakistan and has not been tried or formally charged with any crimes.

"The majority of people are refusing to explain to us what this man has done. He, along with the other Guantanamo prisoners, falls into the vague category of persons who may threaten the national security of the U.S., and they are not burdening themselves with proving their guilt. All these things are a major violation of legal norms and international law," Ryabkov said.

Speaking about the Russians recently detained in Texas, Ryabkov recalled the refusal of the U.S. authorities to release them on bail, even the women who had to sleep on the floor because their cells were too crowded.

"We are getting the impression that they keep these people locked because they have no considerable evidence against them to put psychological pressure on them and to get them to make a so-called deal with the criminal justice system, because otherwise they are facing astronomical prison terms," Ryabkov said.

"Businessman Viktor Bout, who was arrested in Thailand, was pressured in the same way and was extradited to the U.S. under the toughest pressure from the U.S. Pilot Konstantin Yaroshenko, whose abduction in Nigeria was arranged by the U.S. special services, was pressured in the same way," he said.

Ryabkov recalled that both Bout and Yaroshenko were tried in New York "with numerous violations of the legal norms and received huge prison terms for some criminal plot, not for specific actions," Ryabkov said.

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