Guardian Journalist Faces Early Departure

PH2011020802910.jpgYesterday, the Guardian sought clarification on the visa status of its Russia reporter, Luke Harding, whose Kremlin-critical stance and Putin-irking work with Wikileaks saw him deported at the beginning of the month.  It seems they may have their answer.  From Ria-Novosti:

Luke Harding, the Moscow correspondent for the British newspaper The Guardian, said on Wednesday he would have to leave Russia after his visa expired in May.

“I will be sad to leave. I was planning to stay here for two more years. But, unfortunately, it is impossible now,” Harding said in an interview with the Moscow-based Ekho Moskvy radio station.

Harding, 42, was refused reentry to Russia on February 5 after beingabsent from the country for two months. Russia said the decision wasbecause he had not followed accreditation procedures. Harding returnedto Moscow on Saturday.

He said that the Russian Foreign Ministry told The Guardian that Harding should leave Russia in May.

Read on here.