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Russian Human Rights Journalist Murdered in Moscow

Anna Politkovskaya, known for her reporting of human rights abuses by the Russian military and the plight of civilians in Chechnya, was gunned down Saturday in Moscow. Colleague Nina Ognianova discusses the murder and reflects on Politkovskaya's career in journalism.

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    Mourners continued today to lay flowers outside the apartment of a prominent journalist shot to death in Moscow Saturday. Anna Politkovskaya, known for her critical coverage of the war in Chechnya, was found dead in her apartment building. The 48-year-old special correspondent for the independent newspaper, Novaya Gazeta, died from gunshot wounds, one to the head.

    The death was the most high-profile slaying of a journalist in Russia since the July 2004 assassination of Paul Klebnikov, the U.S.-born editor of the Russian edition of Forbes magazine.

    The Committee to Protect Journalists reports that Russia is the third-deadliest country in the world for journalists over the past 15 years, behind only the conflict-ridden countries of Iraq and Algeria. A new report found that 42 journalists had been killed in Russia since 1992, many of them slain in contract-style executions, and the vast majority unsolved by Russian authorities.

    In Moscow this weekend, there was public outrage.

  • RUSSIAN CITIZEN (through translator):

    If we don't defend ourselves and the people don't defend journalists, more journalists will be killed. This is for sure, because the unlawful government in power is corrupt and the thieves are always afraid of the truth.

  • RUSSIAN CITIZEN (through translator):

    She did a lot for Russia. If there were more journalists like her, the country would become more democratic, more prosperous, and more fair.


    Today, Russian President Putin, in a phone conversation with President Bush, said, quote, "All necessary efforts will be made for an objective investigation into the tragic death of the journalist," according to the Kremlin.