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Russia demands from Kiev thorough investigation of photojournalist murder

September 03, 2014, 11:05 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The last reports from Stenin who for the past several months was working in the armed conflict zone in the southeast of Ukraine, came on August 5
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© ITAR-TASS/Gennady Khamelyanin

MOSCOW, September 03. /ITAR-TASS/. Moscow demands from Kiev a thorough and unbiased investigation into the murder of Andrei Stenin, a photojournalist of the Rossiya Segodnya international news agency, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Rossiya Segodnya Director General Dmitry Kiselyov said Andrei Stenin had been killed in Ukraine a month ago, which has been confirmed by an expert examination.

“The information, made public by the Rossiya Segodnya news agency that is also based on the forensic examination of Stenin’s remains, carried out by the Russian Investigative Committee, suggests that this was another barbarous murder — the work of Ukrainian security forces and the National Guard fighters who controlled, according to eyewitnesses, the territory in which cars came under fire, including the vehicle in which Andrei Stenin’s body was found,” the ministry said.

“We demand that Kiev conduct a thorough and unbiased investigation into the murder of Andrei Stenin and severely punish those responsible,” the ministry added.

According to the Foreign Ministry, “in recent months Russia has lost in Ukraine four journalists - the situation is unprecedented, including compared with other murderous armed conflicts of the recent years.”

“The unlawful practice of hindering reporters’ work, including through attacks, murders and illegal detention and abduction of representatives of the media disliked by Kiev, must be stopped immediately,” the statement says.

“We expect international community’s strong influence on Kiev, including the response of the US and European Union’s that so much care about the freedom of speech and media in other countries and world regions,” the statement says.

“How many other innocent human lives should be sacrificed for Kiev to stop its thoughtless criminal policy towards millions of residents of [Ukraine’s] southeast? the Russian Foreign Ministry asked.

The last reports from Stenin who for the past several months was working in the armed conflict zone in the southeast of Ukraine, came on August 5. Two days later, Rossiya Segodnya confirmed that the journalist was missing.

Protest actions have been staged for the release of photojournalist who was considered abducted by Ukrainian security forces. Many media outlets have placed on their pages banners, calling for the release of Andrei Stenin.

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