The political battle between Russian President Vladimir Putin and American President Donald Trump continues to heat up.
Trump has been imposing stiff sanctions against Russia for a variety of reasons, including their trying to meddle in the 2016 elections and for ignoring US sanctions against Iran and North Korea.
In return, Putin is working to flex his muscle and show that he is not going to allow Trump to tell him what to do.
Retired US Marine Paul Whelan was, according to his family, in Moscow to attend a wedding when Russian authorities arrested him and charged him with carrying out an act of espionage.
Newsweek – AMERICAN ARRESTED FOR ‘ESPIONAGE’ IN RUSSIA, PAUL WHELAN, WAS IN MOSCOW FOR A WEDDING, FAMILY SAYS – The family of a U.S. citizen detained in Russia for allegedly spying said he was a retired Marine who was in Moscow for a wedding.
American Paul Whelan was arrested Friday in Moscow on suspicion of carrying out “an act of espionage,” according to Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), but his family issued a statement to CNN Tuesday rejecting the accusation. Russian officials issued a statement saying he could be imprisoned for up to 10 to 20 years if he was found guilty of violating Article 276 of the federal government’s penal code. The family said it was “deeply concerned” for the safety of Whelan.
“Paul is a retired Marine and was visiting Moscow to attend a wedding… We are deeply concerned for his safety and well-being. His innocence is undoubted and we trust that his rights will be respected,” Whelan’s brother, David Whelan, said in a statement released Tuesday morning to CNN.
“Knowing that he’s not dead, it weirdly really helps,” David Whelan told CNN. “When we couldn’t get ahold of him initially, we were worried, and we are still worried now, but at least we know he is alive.”…
If convicted, Whelan faces 10-20 years in a Russian prison.
Some believe this is Putin’s retaliation for actions taken by the US Department of Justice issuing indictments against several Russian companies and individuals operating here in the US.
According to the DOJ, the indicted Russians were charged after Russian Maria Butina pled guilty to conspiracy against the US for trying to penetrate right-wing political groups.
Obviously, the Cold War, though to have ended 2 decades ago, is still alive and heating up.
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