Reporter Declared Security Threat

Russian diplomats said journalist Natalya Morar had been expelled from Russia because she was a national security risk and that she was banned from returning.

Morar, a Moldovan national working in Moscow who was to receive Russian citizenship in April, was expelled last month when she returned to Moscow from a trip to Israel. Morar, working for the magazine The New Times, said the Russian Embassy gave her a letter on Thursday saying she had been banned under Article 27, Point 1, of a 1996 law. It gave no further detail.

That law says entry into Russia is prohibited to guarantee "state security, or protect public order, or safeguard the health of the people."

Gennady Biryukov, head of the Russian Embassy's consular section in Chisinau, confirmed the text of the letter.