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Ukraine Places Boris Nemtsov’s Girlfriend Under Protection

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Anna Duritskaya, girlfriend of slain Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, is currently under police protection in Ukraine after she received death threats. She is the only witness to Nemtsov’s murder.

Duritskaya, 23, returned to Ukraine on Monday after the Kremlin questioned her for three days. Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin said she “filed a statement about the threat to her life from unidentified people during her time in her parents’ home.” He did not verify who threatened her or what they threatened to do to her. Kiev also said she will not return to Russia.

“We will not let her go back to Russia,” stated Anton Geraschenko, one of the aides to the Interior Minister. “If Russian investigators need to talk to her, they will have to come to Ukraine.”

She told independent Russian Internet channel Dozhd TV she was “interrogated by police… all night” after Nemtsov died and the officials did not allow her to leave. She claims she did not see the murderer since “the attacker approached them from behind and then fled to a getaway car before she could catch a glimpse.”

The Kremlin arrested Anzor Kubashev and Zaur Davayez as they are “suspected of carrying out this crime.” The Federal Security Service and the Investigative Committee did not confirm if the two men were in the car from which Nemtsov was shot, fired the shots, or even the charges against them.” Russian media reports the men confessed, but Nemtsov’s allies are not convinced these two men, who are allegedly from the Caucasus, are the real murderers.

“Organizers should be looked for in [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s inner circle,” claimed Ilya Yashin, one of Nemtsov’s ally. “Given that Putin, who was criticized by Nemtsov, benefited the most, investigators should make that version the key one.”

Yashin, the co-chairman of Nemtsov’s Republican Party of Russia, never heard of the men Russia arrested. Other leaders within the party never heard of them as well.

“I want to believe that these ones are really the ones who conducted [the killing] and that once in a while law enforcement worked professionally and detained real assassins, and did not make a mistake,” he stressed. “The key task for investigators is to find and prosecute the ones who ordered this murder. If everything ends with the detention of scapegoats, irrespective of whether they are the real assassins or not, the practice of political assassinations will continue with no doubt.”


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