Features

Russia Claws at the Rule of Law While Mexico Embraces It


Photo by Christ Chavez

RUSSIA: The courtroom gallery brimmed with lawyers during the trial in January of four men ac­cused of murdering Anna Politkovskaya, a reporter for the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta who was gun­ned down in 2006 at the elevator of her Moscow apartment.

The newspaper had paid a high price for its investigations into political corruption. In 2000, another Novaya reporter had been beaten to death with hammers on a Moscow street. Three years later, the paper’s managing editor died mysteriously from something that caused his skin to peel off.

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MEXICO: In the early morning hours of May 17, 2008, Willy Moya had just closed the V-Bar, one of several popular nightspots he owned in the Pronaf section of Ciudad Juarez, when a couple of friends wandered in and told him they were hungry. Moya decided he could use a bite, so he offered to send one of his bodyguards out for pizza.

Even in ordinary times, Moya had a few bodyguards. But this was no ordinary time in Juarez. The Mexican city of 2 million was averaging more than 100 murders per month.

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