Russian Activist Verzilov, Blogger Varlamov Briefly Detained In South Sudan.

Russian activist Pyotr Verzilov, who is a member of the Pussy Riot protest group, and blogger Ilya Varlamov were briefly detained in South Sudan.

The two tweeted on January 13 that they and three other people, including Varlamov's wife, Lyubov Varlamova, were detained upon arrival at the airport of the city of Kapoeta, some 260 kilometers east of South Sudan's capital, Juba.

Varlamov wrote on his blog that the group arrived in South Sudan as tourists, planning to continue on another flight to Juba, but were stopped and detained after airport security found the remote control of a drone in their luggage.

"They found the remote control, but the drone had already been confiscated by the authorities at the Entebbe airport in Uganda," where the group was traveling prior to their arrival in South Sudan, Varlamov wrote.

According to local law enforcement officers quoted by Meduza, the detainees allegedly could have been "filming military objects with the drone."

Varlamov wrote that the group refused to hand in their mobile phones despite being asked to do so.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a statement quoted by the TASS news agency that the group was subsequently released "as a result of diplomatic efforts."

"At this point, issues related to their departure from South Sudan are under discussion," Zakharova said.

Russian Embassy officials told TASS that South Sudanese officials did not press any charges against the Russian citizens, who will spend the night in the city of Kapoeta and on January 14 will leave for Juba.

It was not immediately clear why the group had chosen South Sudan as a tourist destination.

With reporting by TASS and Meduza

Radio Free Europe

RFE/RL journalists report the news in 22 countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established, including Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Russia.

https://www.rferl.org/

Related news
Rick Scott: Taxpayers shouldn't have to bail out blue states.

Rick Scott: Taxpayers shouldn't have to bail out blue states.

Florida Republican Senator Rick Scott joins "Fox & Friends" to discuss Biden's proposed stimulus plan. Subscribe to Fox News! Watch more Fox News Video: Watch Fox News Channel Live: FOX News Channel (FNC) is a 24-hour all-encompassing news service...

Caravan of Central American migrants heads toward US border - DW News.

Caravan of Central American migrants heads toward US border - DW News.

Thousands of migrants from central America are gathering in Guatemala for an expected push north towards the United States. Mexican border forces are on alert for their arrival. It's thought the migrants are hoping Joe Biden's incoming administrat...

Rep. Jamie Raskin: I'm not losing my son in 2020 and my country in 2021

Rep. Jamie Raskin: I'm not losing my son in 2020 and my country in 2021

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) lost his son to depression in 2020. CNN's Jake Tapper talks with him about having to deal with that tragedy in addition to leading the second impeachment of President Donald Trump. #CNN #News

Biden already working to rejoin Iran Nuclear Deal: report.

Biden already working to rejoin Iran Nuclear Deal: report.

Fox News Senior Strategic Analyst General Jack Keane argues the U.S. has ‘got to be tougher’ when negotiating a new nuclear deal with Iran. Subscribe to Fox News! Watch more Fox News Video: Watch Fox News Channel Live: FOX News Channel (FNC) is a ...

1 1283

BREAKING: Ex-music producer Phil Spector has died aged 81.

BREAKING: Ex-music producer Phil Spector has died aged 81.

Disgraced former music producer Phil Spector has died aged 81. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has confirmed he died of natural causes on Saturday evening. Sky News videos are now available in Spanish here/Los video de ...

Biden will work to 'try to turn the page' in inaugural address: Kate Bedingfield.

Biden will work to 'try to turn the page' in inaugural address: Kate Bedingfield.

Incoming Biden Communications Director Kate Bedingfield is interviewed on "This Week."