IPI today joins global media and international free press groups in demanding the immediate release of WSJ reporter Evan Gershkovich, whom a court in Moscow placed under arrest yesterday on bogus charges of espionage. If convicted, Gershkovich faces at least ten and up to twenty years of prison. Below is our full letter addressed to the Russian ambassador to the United States, Anatoly I. Antonov.



Ambassador Anatoly I. Antonov
Embassy of the Russian Federation to the United States
2650 Wisconsin Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20007

Via email: [email protected]

March 30, 2023

Dear Ambassador Antonov,

We, the undersigned news organizations and nongovernmental press freedom organizations, write to express our deep concern regarding your government’s detention of journalist Evan Gershkovich and the unfounded espionage charges leveled against him.

Gershkovich, who works for The Wall Street Journal and is a United States citizen, has a long professional record as a journalist. He lived in Moscow for several years, is accredited with the Russian Foreign Ministry, and has been covering Russia as part of the Journal’s Moscow bureau. Gershkovich is a journalist, not a spy, and should be released immediately and without conditions.

As an urgent first step, Gershkovich should be granted immediate access to an attorney provided by his employer. We also demand confirmation of his well-being and that he be allowed communication with his family.

Gershkovich’s unwarranted and unjust arrest is a significant escalation in your government’s anti-press actions. Russia is sending the message that journalism within your borders is criminalized and that foreign correspondents seeking to report from Russia do not enjoy the benefits of the rule of law.

We look forward to your response as we continue to vigilantly follow every step of the proceedings against Evan Gershkovich and call for his immediate release.


Peter Barabas, Editorial Director, Euronews

Sally Buzbee, Executive Editor, The Washington Post

Fernando Belzunce, Editor-in-Chief, Vocento, Spain

Giuseppe De Bellis, Executive Editor, SkyTg24

Phil Chetwynd, Global News Director, Agence France-Presse (AFP)

Liz Corbin, Deputy Media Director and Head of News, European Broadcasting Union

Chris Evans, Editor, The Telegraph

Edward Felsenthal, Executive Chairman, TIME

Tony Gallagher, Editor, The Times

Javier Garza Ramos. Editor, Enre2 Laguna, México

Liesl Gerntholtz, Director, Freedom To Write Center, PEN America

Jodie Ginsberg, President, Committee to Protect Journalists

Ricardo Gutiérrez, General Secretary, European Federation of Journalists

Irene Halvorsen, Editor in Chief, Nationen, Norway

Joe Kahn, Executive Editor, The New York Times

Roula Khalaf, Editor, Financial Times

Aleksandra Ketlerienė, Deputy editor-in-chief of LRT.lt, Lithuanian national radio and television

Ian MacGregor, Editor Emeritus, The Telegraph, Society of Editors chair

Susan Marjetti, General Manager, CBC News

Frane Maroevic, Executive Director, International Press Institute

Quinn McKew, Executive Director, ARTICLE 19

Zanny Minton Beddoes, Editor, The Economist

Rialda Ocuz, Program Coordinator International Affairs, BHRT

Julie Pace, Executive Editor, The Associated Press

Vincent Peyrègne, CEO WAN-IFRA, World Association of News Publishers

Martha C. Ramos Sosa, Editor in Chief, Organización Editorial Mexicana

Marcelo Rech, president of the Brazilian Newspaper Association (ANJ)

David Remnick, Editor, The New Yorker

David Rhodes, Executive Chairman, Sky News Group

Pamella Sittoni, Executive Editor, Nation Media Group, Kenya

Ben Taylor, Editor, The Sunday Times

Emma Tucker, Editor in Chief, The Wall Street Journal

Deborah Turness, BBC News’ CEO of News and Current Affairs

Giselle van Cann, Editor-in-Chief NOS Nieuws, The Netherlands

Katharine Viner, Editor-in-Chief, Guardian News & Media

David Walmsley, Editor-in-Chief, The Globe and Mail

Matthew Winkler, Editor-in-Chief Emeritus, Bloomberg News

Werner Zitzmann, Executive Director, Colombian News Media Association