EURASIA LIFT

Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

CPJ: Getting Away With Murder Of Journalists. WHERE? – RUSSIA

Posted by Info on 05/06/2011

CPJ’s 2011 Impunity Index spotlights countries where journalists are slain and killers go free

Russia and Mexico, two of the world’s most murderous countries for the press, are heading in different directions in combating deadly anti-press violence, the Committee to Protect Journalists has found in its newly updated Impunity Index. The index, which calculates unsolved journalist murders as a percentage of each country’s population, found improvement in Russia as journalist murders ebbed and prosecutors obtained two high-profile convictions.

Among the 13 nations on the 2011 index, Russia has made measurable progress. Senior investigative officials reopened several unsolved journalist murder cases after meeting with a CPJ delegation in 2010, and, in April, prosecutors won convictions in the 2009 murder of reporter Anastasiya Baburova in Moscow.

No journalists were murdered in reprisal for their work in 2010, the first year since 1999 that no targeted media killings were reported in Russia. At the same time, authorities won convictions in the 2009 double-murder of reporter Anastasiya Baburova and human rights lawyer Stanislav Markelov. But those murders, committed on a downtown Moscow street by two radical nationalists, may prove much easier to close than the 16 unsolved cases over the past decade. They include the contract killings of investigative journalists Anna Politkovskaya and Paul Klebnikov; the abduction and murder of Natalya Estemirova, who covered human rights in the volatile North Caucasus, and the mysterious poisoning of the critical newspaper editor Yuri Shchekochikhin. High-ranking law enforcement officials pledged to re-examine five cold journalist murder cases, and they reported progress in the Politkovskaya slaying and other cases.

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