Two arrested Americans endangered Russian troops, says Kremlin

Two Americans detained in Ukraine during the war on Ukraine during the war were mercenaries who endangered the lives of Russian soldiers and should be held accountable for their actions, the Kremlin said on Monday.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, interviewed by NBC television, also said that US basketball star Brittney Griner, who had been detained in Russia for more than two months, was guilty of drug offenses but not hostage.

Peskov’s remarks were the first formal acknowledgment that the two men, identified in U.S. reports as Andy Huynh, 27, of Hartselle, Alabama, and Alexander Drueke, 39, of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, were in custody and under investigation.

“They are good luck soldiers. They were involved in illegal activities in the territory of Ukraine. They were involved in shooting at and [the] shooting at our soldiers. “They were risking their lives,” said Peskov.

“And they should be held accountable for the crimes they have committed. These crimes need to be investigated. … The only thing that is clear is that they have committed crimes. They are not in the Ukrainian army. They are not dependent on Geneva. . “

Family members said last week that the two men had gone to Ukraine as volunteers and were missing.

Russian media last week released photos of those taken while fighting for Ukraine.

Peskov did not want to reveal where the men were being held.

Two Britons and Moroccans have already been convicted by a Donetsk separatist court on the grounds that they were mercenaries and not subject to the Geneva Convention on Prisoners of War.

Kyiv condemned the ruling as meaningless, saying the fighters were members of the Ukrainian military and therefore subject to the Geneva Conventions.

Moscow calls its operations a “special military operation” to disarm Ukraine and protect it from fascists. Ukraine and its allies in the West say fascist accusations are baseless and the war is a baseless aggression.

Prosecutor Griners

Peskov said Griner, who had come to promote basketball in Russia, was being prosecuted under a law banning the importation of drugs.

“Russia is not the only country in the world that has fairly strict laws in that sense … it is prosecuted by law. We can do nothing about it,” Peskov told NBC.

He “strongly disagrees” with any notion that Griner, who arrived in Russia in February, was being held hostage.

“We can not call her hostage. Why should we call her hostage?” he said. “She broke Russian law and is now being prosecuted. This is not about being held hostage.”

Russian customs officials say a cartridge containing hashish oil was found in Griner’s luggage.

The US State Department ruled in May that Griner had been wrongfully detained and assigned diplomats to work for her release. Her wife, Cherelle Griner, has said she is a political pawn.

Two arrested Americans endangered Russian troops, says Kremlin

Source link Two arrested Americans endangered Russian troops, says Kremlin

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