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Russian journalist shot dead in Kiev

The journalist died of injuries on his way to hospital
Arkady Babchenko Sergei Bobylyov/TASS
Arkady Babchenko
© Sergei Bobylyov/TASS

KIEV, May 29. /TASS/. Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko was shot and killed by the doors of the house where he lived in Kiev, an official at the Ukrainian National Police told TASS.

"Yes, it's true, we have the information on his death," the official said, confirming that the assassinated man was Babchenko.

At the same time, the Ukrainian interior ministry said that a Russian citizen, born in 1977, had been fatally wounded in the Ukrainian capital.

"A man was shot in Kiev. He died of injuries in an ambulance vehicle. The victim is a TV host," an interior ministry official said.

The city police department’s press service later confirmed the reports, saying that a criminal case into the matter was launched on charges of premeditated murder.

Kiev police chief Andrei Krishchenko earlier said that police viewed Babchenko’s professional activities as a most likely motive.

"Two versions are being examined: Babchenko’s work and his civic stance," he told reporters. "Professional activities are seen as the first and the most evident version."

In a 112 Ukraine TV channel broadcast, Krishchenko said that the attacker possibly had accomplices.

Police are currently interviewing witnesses and trying to obtain footage from CCTV cameras nearby, the Kiev city police chief said.

Anton Gerashchenko, a Ukrainian legislator and adviser to Interior Minister Arsen Avakov, disclosed some details of Babchenko’s murder on his Facebook page.

"Arkady went to a shop to buy some bread. The assailant was waiting for him at the staircase of his residential building," Gerashchenko said, adding that the victim was shot in the back several times.

Babchenko was a Russian writer, journalist and military correspondent. He contributed to Russia’s Moskovsky Komsomolets daily, as well as TV Tsentr and Channel One TV. He also wrote articles for the Novaya Gazeta newspaper. He left Russia in 2017, and lived in Czech Republic and Israel. Since August 2017, Babchenko stayed in Kiev, where he hosted a show on a Crimean-Tatar TV channel, ATR.