Four of the detainees, namely Anastasia Dyatlova, Alexander Fishenko, Victoria Khlebanova and Alexander Posabilov also have a Russian citizenship. So we regard them to be Russian citizens. It’s a duty to provide all necessary assistance to our citizens who got into trouble. It’s a duty of each Consul official.
What kind of assistance are you providing them?
We can recommend a lawyer, provided that they don’t have lawyers. Of course we would like a Consul access to check their conditions. If necessary, we can also arrange meetings with their families, with their relatives. Some of them, as you know, have relatives here on the U.S. soil.
If this goes forward and they’re charged, what would your role be then?
If they will be charged --- The question right now is that they’re detained. Federal Court of Houston will introduce their charges according to the US rules. That would be court procedures. Our royal assistance --- we don’t know the official charges yet.
What are your interests in terms of looking after well-being of those who have been detained?
Sir, it’s our duty to check the situation and to provide assistance to all Russian citizens abroad who got in some trouble.
Do you have any concerns about their treatment or that they get a fair trial or a fair assessment of what happened?
No, luckily we don’t have any concerns yet. But we need to check it – yes – that all conditions are according to standards. If they need some medical help, legal assistance – that’s it.
The Consulate was quick to point out that they have not been yet charged with espionage. If they were charged with espionage, what the reaction would be there?
Sir, I haven’t seen such charges. Let’s wait. It’s not our duties to make any predictions and prognosis of what will happen and what kind of charges will be put against them.
And what do you expect will happen going forward? You said you have been providing assistance. Have they accepted it?
Yes, of course. Meetings with Consulate officials, meetings with their relatives, audit of their well-being.
Was there anything else you’d like to tell our listeners?
Oh, no, sir. Not yet
Thank you for your time!