Stanislav Markelov, a leading human rights lawyer, and reporter Anastasia Baburova have been assassinated in Moscow — the latest fatalities of critics of the government. This assassination was done with a silencer on a public street just a half of a mile from the Kremlin — as if meant to send a message to other lawyers, reporters, and civil libertarians.
Markelov has been leading calls against the early release of Yuri Budanov, the former Russian colonel whose imprisonment for killing an 18-year-old Chechen woman has been a national controversy.
Svetlana Gannushkina, a lawyer with Moscow’s Civic Assistance organization and a colleague of Markelov, warned that the assassination was meant to send a message: “Anybody can be killed like this, in broad daylight, in the center of town. I think the plan was not only to kill a particular person but also to terrify the rest of society.”
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