Journalist Gunned Down in Dagestan - Investigators
A journalist killed Tuesday in the volatile North Caucasus Republic of Dagestan was likely to have been assassinated because of his work, according to investigators, according to RIA Novosti.
Akhmednabi Akhmednabiev, an editor at local newspaper "Novoe Delo," died in his car outside his house in Makhachkala, the regional capital, after it was fired on at about 7:00 a.m. by unknown assailants, the Investigative Committee said in a statement.
Various motives for the crime are being considered, but the “most likely version is that Akhmednabiev’s murder is linked to his professional activities,” according to the Investigative Committee. A criminal case has been opened into the murder.
Akhmednabiev was a deputy editor at Novoe Delo, a weekly newspaper founded in 1991, where he wrote about Dagestani politics, according to the publication's website. The journalist had been the intended target of at least one other assassination attempt: he escaped unscathed from a January attack when his car was shot up, the Investigative Committee said.
Russia is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists, with 55 confirmed assassinations of media employees since 1992, according to international monitoring body Committee to Protect Journalists. Many of those reporters and editors were murdered in Russia’s troubled North Caucasus, which is plagued by a continuing low-level Islamist insurgency, high levels of organized crime and endemic corruption.
Kazbek Gekkiyev, a news anchor for a regional affiliate of state-owned broadcaster VGTRK, died in December last year after being shot three times in the head when returning from work in Nalchik, the capital of the North Caucasus Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria. The man suspected of killing him was himself gunned down two months later, Vesti reported.