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US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken urged US citizens in Russia to "immediately leave" the country, amid the arrest of Wall Street Journal journalist Evan Gershkovich.

"We are deeply troubled by the widely publicized detention of an American journalist by Russia. We are in contact with the WSJ regarding this situation," the document noted.

"The State Department's highest priority is the safety of American citizens abroad. We reiterate our strong warnings about the dangers facing American citizens in Russia. American citizens living in or traveling to Russia should leave the country immediately, as travel advisories are in order," said Blinken, whose statement was published by the US State Department, as quoted by BTA.

Russia arrests American journalist on espionage charges

The secretary of state said his department was in contact with WSJ officials about the situation surrounding the arrest of the American reporter.

"Any time an American citizen abroad is detained, we immediately request consular access and seek to provide all necessary support," Blinken stressed.

Earlier today, Russia's FSB announced that WSJ Moscow correspondent Gershkovich was detained in Yekaterinburg on suspicion of espionage for the US government.

According to the secret services, the American was collecting information, representing a state secret, "about the activities of an enterprise of the Russian military-industrial complex."

The WSJ denied the allegations against Gershkovich and demanded his immediate release.

In turn, the spokeswoman of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, stated that Gershkovich's activities in Yekaterinburg "have nothing to do with journalism."

USA and Russia