MOSCOW, December 1. /TASS/. Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov believes that opposition politician Boris Nemtsov who was shot dead in February 2015 contributed to Russia’s development rather than hindering it, adding that he had been murdered by the country’s enemies.
"Nemtsov was murdered by Russia’s enemies," Kadyrov said on Thursday answering a question whether he is following the investigation into the Nemtsov case and when asked to comment on his acquaintances interviewed as part of this case.
"Nemtsov did not hinder Russia’s development. On the contrary, he contributed to it. We do need such people as today’s opposition members," the Chechen leader said.
Kadyrov earlier told TASS that the masterminds behind the crime attempted to discredit Chechnya’s leadership by using Nemtsov’s murder. He noted though that their efforts were in vain.
Nemtsov, former deputy prime minister under then-President Boris Yeltsin, co-chairman of the Parnas party and Yaroslavl regional legislature MP, was gunned down in downtown Moscow on February 27, 2015. Five individuals were arrested this past March 8 on suspicion of murdering the politician: Zaur Dadayev, Anzor and Shadid Gubashev, Tamerlan Eskerkhanov and Khamzat Bakhayev.
Depending on their role and the degree of their involvement, the suspects are being charged under section 2, article 105 ("Contract Murder Committed by an Organized Group") and section 3, article 222 of Russia’s Criminal Code ("Illegal Acquisition, Transfer, Storage, Transportation and Possession of Firearms and Ammunition by an Organized Group"). The Contract Murder Committed by an Organized Group charge carries a life sentence.
The accused have denied their complicity in Nemtsov’s murder. The term of their arrest has been extended until December 30.