Memorial plaque in memory of Anna Politkovskaya. Photo: RFE/RL

19 July 2018, 11:02

AI: authorities fail to conduct full investigation into Anna Politkovskaya's murder

The decision pronounced by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in favour of relatives of journalist Anna Politkovskaya, murdered in 2006, confirms that the Russian authorities did not conduct a full effective investigation into the crime, announced the human rights organization "Amnesty International" (AI).

On October 7, 2006, Anna Politkovskaya, a well-known journalist, an observer of the "Novaya Gazeta", was killed in a lift of her house in the centre of Moscow. Five natives of Chechnya were sentenced in the case of the journalist's murder. Rights defenders declared that the Russian authorities demonstrated their unwillingness to find customers of the Anna Politkovskaya's murder.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on July 17, the ECtHR found the investigation into the Anna Politkovskaya's murder ineffective. The Strasbourg Court obliged Russia to pay 20,000 euros compensation to the murdered journalists' relatives.

"The Strasbourg Court has only confirmed what we have been talking about all these years. There was no proper investigation into the Anna's murder: investigators did not find and were not actually searching for the persons who had commissioned the crime," stated Marie Struthers, the AI director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, as quoted in the AI's release, published on its website on July 18.

Marie Struthers also drew attention to the dissenting opinions of the two judges who expressed their concern over the independence of the investigation. "They pointed out that the Strasbourg Court was supposed to give its assessment in order to draw attention to the problem of judicial independence in this and similar cases," the AI director added.

In their release, the rights defenders have emphasized that the lack of investigation independence remains one of the main reasons why the vast majority of crimes against journalists, rights defenders and civil society activists in Russia go unpunished.

Marie Struthers has also urged the Russian authorities "to conduct a full, impartial and independent investigation into the Anna Politkovskaya's murder, which would end with a trial against the persons who had commissioned the crime."

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on July 19, 2018 at 03:29 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

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