Supporters of Slain Russian Journalist to Seek Justice Elsewhere
Posted Aug 7, 2009 6:19 PM CDT
By Martha Neil
Supporters of slain Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya plan to ask the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg to pursue those responsible for her murder, after a Moscow court refused Friday to halt a controversial retrial of three relatively minor figures and order a new investigation that was also requested by prosecutors.
Three men accused of playing a minor role in Politkovskaya's 2006 shooting death outside her home in Moscow are now being retried by a military tribunal following a reversal on appeal of their initial acquittals in June. Her family and lawyers had hoped that this would give them leverage to push for a new probe into her murder, according to the Associated Press and Reuters.
Now, however, they see little hope that justice will be done in Russia, the AP reports.
"The point of the appeal was very simple," says attorney Karinna Moskalenko, who is representing the family. "The crime is not solved and the case is not investigated. All we're saying is the way the case was submitted to the courts a year ago did not answer a single important question ... Who ordered the crime or who committed it? And if there is evidence, it must be brought to the court."
At issue in the convoluted criminal case--which was discussed in detail in a July ABA Journal cover story--are suspicions that justice won't be done due to Politkovskaya's work as a journalist who investigated human rights abuses in Chechnya and was critical both of the Kremlin and the Kremlin-backed Chechnyan government.
ABAJournal.com: "Even Routine Law Practice is Difficult and Dangerous in Russia"