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Politkovskaya killer 'identified'

Anna Politkovskaya
Politkovskaya's case highlighted attacks on journalists

Russian investigators have identified the killer of journalist Anna Politkovskaya, an aide to the prosecutor-general has said.

The suspect was not named, but the official, Vyacheslav Smirnov, said "all measures are being taken to find and detain him".

The shooting of Ms Politkovskaya near her Moscow flat in October 2006 provoked an international outcry.

Former and serving security officers are among nine people charged.

Ms Politskovskaya was a leading critic of the Kremlin, especially over its conduct of the war in Chechnya. She exposed atrocities against Chechen civilians by Russian-backed security forces.

Lt Col Pavel Ryaguzov from the Federal Security Service (FSB) is among those charged in the murder investigation, which has now been extended until 7 September.

Investigators believe that he could have passed on details of Ms Politkovskaya's address to another suspect, who in turn gave them to the killer.

Her former colleagues at Moscow newspaper Novaya Gazeta accused Kremlin hardliners of interfering in the murder investigation after a lead prosecutor in the case was replaced last September.


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