Prominent Russian journalist and Putin critic Arkady Babchenko killed in Kyiv

30 May, 2018, 19:56 | Author: Angel Logan
  • Vladimir Putin

A dissident Russian journalist who was reported murdered in Kiev dramatically reappeared alive on Wednesday in the middle of a briefing about his own killing by the Ukrainian state security service.

Arkady Babchenko appeared at a Press conference in Kiev on Thursday afternoon saying that the reported murder was part of sting operation to catch a hit squad.

Ukrainian National Security Agency head Vasyl Hrytsak said the suspects planned to kill another 30 people in Ukraine.

Mr Gerashchenko said Mr Babchenko's killer was waiting for him on the staircase inside the journalist's building and shot him in the back as he was going out to buy bread.

"From Babchenko's position, even his Moscow colleagues looked this way: weak, conformist, inclined to endless compromises", Russian journalist Yury Saprykin wrote on Meduza, an independent news site.

"We have thwarted the attempted murder of Babchenko by carrying out this special operation", he said.

Babchenko left Russian Federation after he criticized the Kremlin in a Facebook post in 2017.

"It was him who did for Novaya Gazeta the best reportages from the war in South Ossetia", the newspaper wrote in an editorial, calling him a "true artist".

While studying law in Moscow aged 18, Mr Babchenko was conscripted into the Russian army and served during the Chechen wars from 1994-2000.

Russian Federation said it was happy that Mr Bachenko was alive after all.

"I would like to apologise for what you have all had to go through", Babchenko, who looked on the verge of tears at times, told reporters.

Well known for being a critic of the Kremlin, he also stood in unofficial elections organised by the opposition in 2012, and also denounced Russia's actions in Syria and eastern Ukraine.

Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko has died after being shot near his home in Kiev, Ukrainian police say.

Kyiv police spokeswoman Oksana Blyshchyk said police received an emergency call on May 29 from doctors who said a woman called them to say she had "found her husband at home in a pool of blood".

Having been called unpatriotic over a piece a year ago on Russia's intervention in Syria, Babchenko complained of an atmosphere of hate toward his work. Russian authorities again denied any connection with the plane's downing over an area of Ukraine held by pro-Russian separatist forces.

He has hosted a programme on the Crimean Tatar TV station ATR for the past year.

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