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Russian Activists Commemorate Slain Rights Defender Estemirova

  • RFE/RL's Russian Service

Russian and international rights organizations have called for justice on the fifth anniversary of the killing of slain Chechen rights activist and journalist Natalya Estemirova.

Amnesty International is holding an event in Moscow to commemorate her death and is collecting signatures for a petition demanding officials thoroughly investigate her death.

Estemirova was abducted in the Chechen capital, Grozny, on July 15, 2009. Her body was found the next day in Ingushetia.

The Memorial Human Rights Center, where Estemirova worked, said an investigation by authorities showed the possible involvement of law enforcement officers in the crime.

No one has been arrested for her murder.

David Kramer, president of the rights watchdog Freedom House, said Russian officials had "dragged their feet and pushed forward a version of events [of Estemirova's death] that is obviously fabricated, shielding her killers from justice, effectively validating their actions."