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Family lobby over piracy-charge son

The family of a Briton held in Russia on piracy charges have travelled to London to lobby for his safe release.

Kieron Bryan, a freelance film-maker, is one of 30 people detained in the northern city of Murmansk after Greenpeace's vessel Arctic Sunrise was boarded by the Russian coast guard.

Actor Jude Law, Blur frontman Damon Albarn and fashion designer Vivienne Westwood have all joined the campaign to free the activists, who had been protesting at the offshore platform owned by Russia's state-controlled energy giant Gazprom in the Pechora Sea last month.

Mr Bryan's parents, Ann and Andy, are due to meet with deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman today having travelled from their home in Shebbear, north Devon, to campaign for his release.

Mr Bryan's brother, Russell, who lives near his sibling in London, said: "We are looking to the British government to do as much as it can to help Kieron and the others being held in Russia.

"We want to get them free as soon as possible and we are sure the backing of the British government could help us achieve that."

The cameraman, 29, has been told he may be detained for two months pending a piracy investigation.

Greenpeace denies any wrongdoing and described the charge as "absurd and outrageous".

The videographer's brother, 32, said: "Harriet Harman is my brother's local MP and she has shown a great interest in this case.

"Between 50 and 100 of Kieron's friends have written to her office asking for help, and to be fair her staff have been really good.

"Ms Harman is an MP of high standing, she is well-known and respected. We hope she can help."

Greenpeace is campaigning against attempts by companies to drill for oil in the waters of the Arctic, warning that a spill would be highly environmentally damaging and extraction of more fossil fuels will add to climate change.

Gazprom's plans to start drilling from the Prirazlomnaya platform in the first quarter of 2014 raised the risk of an oil spill in an area that contains three nature reserves protected by Russian law, campaigners said.


From Belfast Telegraph