Youngstown Press Club Renews Call for Reporter’s Release

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Youngstown Press Club is renewing its call for the release of a reporter from a Russian prison as the first anniversary of his arrest approaches.

Evan Gershkovich, a Wall Street Journal reporter, was arrested on an espionage charge on March 29, 2023, and still awaits trial. He is the first American journalist charged with espionage in Russia since the Cold War.

Gershkovich, the Wall Street Journal and the U.S. government deny the charge.

“We continue to stand with Evan on the one-year anniversary of his imprisonment,” said Lori A. Factor, Youngstown Press Club president. 

“A free press is the hallmark of a civilized society. Journalism is not a crime, and journalists should never feel as though danger dictates their reporting in any country,” Factor said.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has declared Gershkovich wrongly detained, and President Joe Biden has promised to bring him home.

Last month, the Youngstown Press Club sponsored an “I Stand with Evan” event, which featured Paul Beckett, the Wall Street Journal’s assistant editor, who is working full time to secure Gershkovich’s release.

Gershkovich, 32, is the American-born son of Soviet-era émigrés to the United States. He learned Russian from his parents and built a career as a journalist focused on Russia. He joined The Wall Street Journal in January 2022 after having reported from Moscow for Agence France Press and The Moscow Times.

Pictured at top: Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich stands in a glass cage in a courtroom at Moscow City Court, in Moscow, Russia, on Feb. 20, 2024. (Moscow City Court via AP)

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.