Estonian journalist arrested in Russia ahead of presidential elections
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#1 Mar 1, 2012
PSKOV, Russia -- An Estonian journalist working for Estonian Public Broadcasting was arrested in northwestern Russia on Thursday for allegedly filming without special permission from the Foreign Ministry, the broadcaster reported.
Policemen in the western Russian city of Pskov detained a correspondent from the Estonian public broadcasting company ERR and confiscated his video material, the company said on Thursday.
Igor Taro was on a business trip to Russia covering the local situation in Pskov in the run up to the Russian presidential election on March 4, when policemen arrested him as he was filming election campaign billboards.
ERR news chief Urmet Kook said the journalist displayed his passport and a journalist visa to policemen, which he already used on several occasions during his trips to Russia.
A policeman told him that it means nothing and he [Taro] needed a special accreditation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kook said.
He added that Taro spent three hours at a police station. Russian policemen confiscated a memory card with all his video material and promised to return it empty later.
Taro was released and is currently at the Estonian consulate in Pskov.
Pskov police were not able to comment on the situation as of yet.
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