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MOSCOW, January 13 (Itar-Tass) —— Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin pledged to discuss the criminal case, in which the Khimkinskaya Pravda chief editor, Mikhail Beketov, one of the defenders of the Khimki forest, is the injured party, with chief of the Investigative Committee Alexander Bastrykin.
Putin presented governmental awards in the field of printed mass media for 2011 at the governmental house of receptions. The most outstanding, talented journalists, the chiefs of leading media and the laureates of the prize for the few past years, met there according to the tradition. Journalist Mikhail Beketov was also awarded.
After the awarding ceremony the chief of the Beketov Foundation Lyudmila Fedotova came up to the prime minister and asked to accelerate the investigation in the Beketov case. She noted that the prosecutor’s office is investigating the similar case of another journalist Konstantin Fetisov. “The same criminal methods, the same batons for beating were used in this case,” she said. Fedotova offered to merge these two criminal cases and bring them back for investigation.
“I will certainly talk with Alexander Bastrykin. I believe that we will speed up this case,” the premier pledged.
Putin hugged the laureate Beketov and wished him the soonest recovery. “I wish you to recover, with all my heart, all the best wishes to you,” he said. “I was watching a TV footage yesterday about the murder of a French journalist in Syria. Your profession is very dangerous in the modern world,” Putin said.
In November 2008 the Khimkinskaya Pravda chief editor, who published criticizing articles about the Khimki authorities and the project for the construction of a highway through the Khimki Forest, was attacked. He was found beaten near his house. Studying the case files the prosecutor’s office in the Moscow Region concluded that the attackers intended not just to beat up, but kill the journalist. The professional activities of the injured party are taken as a theory of the incident.