Russia arrests Norwegian for spying

Russia arrests Norwegian for spying

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Authorities in Moscow have arrested a Norwegian citizen accused of obtaining classified Russian naval documents for espionage purposes, Russian state media is reporting.

The Norwegian, placed in pre-trial detention, has been identified in media reports as 62-year-old Frode Berg, a retired member of the Norwegian Border Commissioner, an agency that oversees the Norwegian-Russian border.

A Russian citizen, Alexei Zhitnyuk, is accused of treason for allegedly having passed the documents to the Norwegian, state media reported.
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Zhitnyuk, a former police officer, was contacted by the Norwegian while doing security work for a company contracted to supply electronic equipment to the Russian navy, the Interfax news agency reported.

Norway's Foreign Ministry confirmed that the Norwegian national was being provided "legal representation" and "consular assistance in accordance with our guidelines for imprisoned citizens abroad".

"Due to Norwegian rules of confidentiality we are not at liberty to disclose personal information in consular cases," spokesman Frode Overland Andersen said in a statement to dpa.
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