The official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, explained the refusal to extend the visa to the BBC correspondent in Moscow Sarah Rainsford by the fact that London refused to extend the visa to an employee of a Russian news agency in 2019.
In her telegram channel, Zakharova does not mention the name of the Russian, who, according to her, could not obtain a visa extension in the UK and does not name the media, but notesthat the situation developed in 2019:
The saga has been dragging on since the summer of 2019, when a journalist from a Russian news agency and members of his family had to leave the United Kingdom without waiting (during the preceding year and a half) to extend their visas and any explanation of the reasons for this attitude.
From the post of the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, it can be concluded that Sarah Rainsford will be able to obtain a new visa to live in Russia after the British authorities issue a visa to the Russian correspondent.
A source in the Foreign Ministry told The Insider that the name of the Russian, because of the situation with which Rainsford did not extend the visa in Russia, the department does not specifically name and expect that he will first be named in the British Foreign Office.
The British Embassy in Moscow has already called on the Russian authorities to reconsider the decision not to extend the visa for the BBC journalist:
This is yet another unjustified action by the Russian authorities. We urge them to reconsider this reactionary move against the award-winning BBC journalist. Such actions will only continue to exacerbate the situation with freedom of the media in Russia.
The BBC correspondent in Moscow Sarah Rainsford, refused to renew her visa, which expires on 31 August. Shortly before that, she took part in the “Big Conversation” with Alyaksandr Lukashenka in Minsk, during which she asked him about his legitimacy because of the persecution of the opposition in Belarus.