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Russia Rules Out Murder In Journalist's Death


http://gdb.rferl.org/D489BE64-84CC-4B22-A2CD-E0D4A8D5EB67_w203.jpg --> http://gdb.rferl.org/D489BE64-84CC-4B22-A2CD-E0D4A8D5EB67_mw800_mh600.jpg Ivan Safronov fell out of a window of his fifth-floor apartment (ITAR-TASS) June 29, 2007 -- The Russian Prosecutor-General's Office has reportedly ruled that a journalist who fell from a window of his Moscow apartment building was not murdered.


Ivan Safronov had been investigating arms deals shortly before he was found dead in front of his home in March.


"No crime was uncovered in this case. In the course of the investigation the 'criminal version' was fully investigated. No evidence of that was discovered," an unidentified official from the Prosecutor-General's Office told Interfax.


He added, however, that the investigation was not yet finished.


Ilya Bulavinov, the deputy editor of the "Kommersant" daily that employed Safronov, told the Reuters news agency that the official investigation was not thorough enough.


Russia ranks as one of the world's deadliest countries for journalists.


(Reuters, Interfax)

The Erosion Of CIS Press Freedom
Prominent Kazakh journalist Sergei Duvanov being arrested in Almaty last month (RFE/RL)

FROM BAD TO WORSE. RFE/RL and Freedom House experts held a panel discussion at which they analyzed the erosion of press freedom in many CIS countries. According to Freedom House rankings, in 1994, six of the 12 CIS countries were rated "partly free"; by 2004, 11 of the 12 were rated "not free."


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