MOSCOW, Dec. 25 (Xinhua) -- Russian authorities had dropped criminal cases against 30 Greenpeace activists from the ship Arctic Sunrise, the environmental group's local lawyer said Wednesday.
"All activists have arrived at the Investigative Committee of St. Petersburg to be familiarized with the decision," Interfax news agency quoted Andrei Suchkov as saying.
By Wednesday afternoon, 16 environmentalists had received formal resolutions closing their cases. The committee was expected to issue resolutions to the rest by the end of Wednesday.
All non-Russian activists would then be free to leave the country, their lawyer said.
The activists, who crewed the Arctic Sunrise vessel, were detained on Sept. 19 by Russian authorities after attempting to stage a protest on an Arctic oil drilling platform.
The cases were dropped in conjunction with an amnesty granted this month to about 25,000 prisoners by the State Duma, or lower house of parliament.