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Political focus: Moldova deports Russian journalists

The Moldovan border police have again denied entry to the country for Russian journalists. During a passport control at the airport of Chişinău, the observer of the Zvezda television channel Aleksey Samolyotov and VGTRK producer Marina Safronova were detained.

The Russian Foreign Ministry made an official statement as to the incident, calling the actions of the Moldovan authorities unacceptable.

According to Samolyotov, Moldovan border guards did not offer any explanations about what was happening: "They completed bunches of papers concerning us. And that was it". "It took them two solid hours to go through our passports; they turned us around and took us to the airside. We did not even manage to have coffee, everything was closed. And we were left without documents, which was the most important thing," the observer said.

Information on the incident was confirmed by the head of the press service of the border police of Moldova, Raisa Nowicki. "These citizens of the Russian Federation were denied entry to the republic, so they will be sent to Moscow with the next flight," noted the spokesperson for the border service.

According to her, the reason for this decision was that the journalists were not able to explain the purpose of the trip. "They said they had arrived on a private visit, but could not confirm their intentions," the police spokesperson said.

"We came to visit friends with my colleague producer Marina Safronova with whom we made a documentary about astronautics seven years ago. To show our film," said Alexei Samolyotov. He stressed that had told the host about the purpose of the visit, that he is the author of the idea and co-scriptwriter of the most popular Russian blockbuster "Salyut-7". He shot at least twenty films on space travel and planned to take part in a public meeting on the subject of: "Space and Cinema: Life with its Rules."

"It's disgusting that Russian journalists should be caught at the point of entry to the country - we flew here to show a film in which there is no politics. We regard this as an attempt to make a political row for no reason at all," concluded the documentary filmmaker.

Earlier, Moldova has already refused entry to the country to virtually all representatives of the Russian mass media. Among the deported persons there were also figures of culture and art, business, and politics.

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