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Politkovskaya murder retrial set for August

Politkovskaya murder retrial set for August
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Three men accused of involvement in the killing of Russian journalist and Kremlin critic Anna Politkovskaya are set to be retried next month.

The Supreme Court ordered the move after overturning the trio’s acquittal at an earlier hearing. No one has been charged with the murder itself. Accused of being accomplices, the suspects were cleared by a jury in Moscow in February. But the Supreme Court insisted the case be re-heard after accepting prosecution claims that the trial was riddled with procedural violations. Nearly three years after she was shot dead at her apartment block in Moscow, Anna Politkovskaya’s family oppose a re-run, saying it will sap resources from efforts to find the mastermind of the killing. After this month’s murder of a close friend of Politkovskaya, the UN has offered to help Russian investigations. Human rights activist Natalia Estemirova was abducted in Chechnya and her body found in the neighbouring republic of Ingushetia. The latest in a series of deaths of establishment critics, it has led to fresh questions over the Kremlin’s pledges to uphold the law.