May 25, 6:03 AM EDT

Russia says it has no access to men detained in Ukraine

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KIEV, Ukraine (AP) -- Russia's embassy in Ukraine says it has still not been given access to two Russian citizens detained earlier this month on suspicion of fighting alongside separatists in the eastern region of Luhansk.

The Russian Embassy said Monday that it filed a formal request on May 19 for its consul to visit the men in the hospital where they are being treated for battle wounds.

Ukraine says the men are intelligence operatives working under direct orders from Moscow and says their presence is further evidence of Russia's support for the separatist insurgency in the east. Russia denies it is supplying arms or manpower to rebel forces.

The embassy says Ukrainian authorities are applying psychological pressure to force the detained men into saying they are serving Russian soldiers.

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