Ex-U.S. marine held in Russia ‘on hunger strike’

A former U.S. marine has gone on hunger strike in Russia to protest against his incarceration and the violation of his rights, according to his family.

Trevor Reed, who is serving a nine-year jail sentence, was convicted last year of endangering the lives of two policemen while drunk in Moscow.

Reed denies the charge, describing it as a political move.

Washington has called the trial a "theater of the absurd."

Releasing a statement late on Monday (November 9), Reed’s family said the former marine had begun a hunger strike “to protest his arbitrary detention and Russian authorities' numerous and flagrant violations of his basic human rights and his rights under Russian law”.

Although the family did not say how long the hunger strike was planned for, they urged U.S. authorities to support Reed and give him the same attention as high profile Russian dissidents, such as Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.

There has been no immediate comment about the hunger strike from the prison holding him.

The U.S. embassy in Moscow did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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