Russia: LGBT activist flees after accusations of collaborating with US intelligence

Russian LGBT rights activist Alexander Ermoshkin has left the country after a nationally televised story on the state-owned Russia-1 channel accused him of collaborating with U.S. intelligence services. He confirmed in a Facebook post that he had arrived in New York and was staying with friends.

Ermoshkin refuted the allegations, saying the show’s producers had set him up. “Without the help, so to speak, of the authorities, it would have been impossible to do this,” he said. “The Rossiya 1 footage cynically distorts the normal diplomatic activities of our Embassy,” a U.S. Embassy said. “Moreover, it includes fake events such as the obviously staged scene in Moscow of supposed recruitment which involved video of people who were clearly not associated with the U.S. Embassy, but were presented as such.”

Ermoshkin is not the first person accused by Russian media of working with American spies: Kendrick White, an American professor who has lived in Russia for more than two decades, was fired from his post at a Russian university earlier this month after being accused of spying in a state television documentary.  Read More