European Union foreign ministers have launched a plea for Russia to free a Ukrainian air force officer who has been on hunger strike in a Russian prison.
Fourteen EU ministers and the French ambassador on Monday held pictures of Nadezhda Savchenko and urged Russian authorities to free the "illegally abducted Ukrainian pilot."
The rare initiative took place on the sidelines of a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels. Savchenko, who was captured in June, is in prison awaiting trial on charges of involvement in the deaths of two Russian journalists killed during the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
She has been on hunger strike for almost two months and concerns are growing for her health.
Savchenko was elected to the Ukrainian parliament in October while in jail in Russia.