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MOSCOW, March 1. /TASS/. Participants in the march to mourn slain Boris Nemtsov are moving towards the crime scene at the Bolshoy Moskvoretsky Bridge in central Moscow.
The column is several hundred metres long, TASS correspondent reports. People are carrying portraits of Nemtsov, Russian flags with mourning bands. The people are solemnly silent. No slogans are heard. Portraits have signs: "He fought for free Russia," "He fought for our future," as well as the core slogan of the march - "Heroes do not die, and those bullets are aimed at each of us."
Nemtsov, 55, was shot dead while walking along the Bolshoy Moskvoretsky Bridge overnight to Saturday with several shots from a handgun from a car passing by him.
He was a co-chair of the RPR-Parnas liberal democratic political party and a deputy of a regional legislature, the Yaroslavl city duma. Nemtsov held a number of Russian government positions in the 1990s.
Moscow authorities have given permission for a planned procession to be attended by a maximum of 50,000 people, the head of the city’s department of regional security, Alexei Mayorov, said.
The official warned that "in an effort to prevent repeated provocations, police will thoroughly check the participants of the event" and asked people to show understanding towards the increased security measures.
Moscow police have pledged to take all the necessary steps to ensure security.
According to Mayorov, no flower-laying ceremony is officially planned during the procession, but organisers said volunteers would take flowers and bring them to a "certain place."
Opposition members have cancelled a demonstration earlier scheduled to be held in Maryino, in southeast Moscow, on Sunday. Nemtsov had been one of the organizers of the event.
The Russian Investigative Committee has opened a criminal case into "murder" and "illicit arms trafficking." The investigators have several theories of the murder, while not ruling out that this was a contract killing. On Sunday, the Investigative Committee asked those who witnessed the murder to contact the investigators.