World Bulletin / News Desk
A Moscow court on Wednesday arrested a suspected Lithuanian spy, a spokeswoman said, highlighting growing tension between Moscow and the former Soviet state now a member of the European Union and NATO.
Lithuania, a Baltic state with a significant Russian minority population, has expressed concerns over increased Russian military activity in the region following Moscow's annexation of Crimea last year.
The spokeswoman, Yulia Skotnikova, named the suspected spy as Arstidas Tamosaitis and said he would be held until July 20. Espionage charges carry a prison term of 10 to 20 years under Russian law.
Interfax news agency quoted Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) as saying earlier on Wednesday it had caught a Lithuanian national in Moscow on Tuesday as he received classified documents from a Russian national.
"Our embassy received official information from the Russian Federal Security Service that, according to them, a Lithuanian citizen was detained," Lithuania's Foreign Affairs Minister Linas Linkevicius said in Vilnius, the BNS news wire said.
"We will ask to meet with the detained person. We are now checking all the other details."
Interfax said the man admitted to being an officer of the Lithuanian military intelligence. He is being held in aMoscow detention centre as the investigation into his case continues.
In the last such case, Lithuania said earlier in May it had detained a staff employee of the FSB who had been trying to infiltrate the country's leadership, law enforcement and security institutions.
Ties between Moscow and Vilnius are badly strained over Ukraine, where the West accuses the Kremlin of driving a rebellion in the Russian-speaking east after having annexed Crimea from Kiev in March 2014. Russiadenies accusations of direct military involvement in east Ukraine.
Lithuania recently staged war games to fend off an attack modelled around the Russian capture of Crimea.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Mayıs 2015, 17:10