Friends of Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya – murdered six years ago – continue to demand that the authorities uncover the truth in the unsolved case. Around 200 of them gathered in Moscow for this on Sunday.
It coincided with the sixtieth birthday celebrations of President Vladimir Putin, after 12 years in power. Politkovskaya was a thorn in Putin’s side over his policy in the Chechnya conflict.
In Paris, our correspondent seized the opportunity of an Amnesty International promotion of freedom of expression in Russia to talk to her daughter.
She said: “I don’t think there is enough pressure behind the investigation. Those working on it do what they can.”
Vera Politkovskaya’s mother investigated abuses and atrocities.
“Media on the side of the opposition talk about the case but not the state media. To do that they would need a pretext, and that would have to be based on the case. If nothing happens in it, nothing is said.”
The Novaïa Gazeta newspaper journalist was found shot in the lift of her apartment building in Moscow on 7 October 2006. Since then there have been five arrests, the last this year in July, of a former police officer. Three men were charged but acquitted. It has never been established who may have ordered the killing.
Her daughter’s fight today is for freedom of the media: “My mother dedicated her life to true journalism. Nothing was more important to her that telling readers the truth in Russia. To do that you have to know, and be capable and have a great deal of courage.
In Moscow, the organisation Reach All Women in War repeated a call on the Russian government to end the killings and persecution of journalists and human rights defenders in the Russian Federation.