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Partner Of Missing Ukrainian Journalist 'Under Pressure'

Ukrainian journalist Vasyl Klymentyev, who has been missing since August 11 (photo courtesy of
Ukrainian journalist Vasyl Klymentyev, who has been missing since August 11 (photo courtesy of
A colleague of missing Ukrainian journalist Vasyl Klymentyev says Klymentyev's partner is under pressure from authorities, RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service reports.

Petro Matviyenko, deputy chief editor of the weekly "Novyy Styl" (New Style) in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, told RFE/RL that police in Kharkiv did not allow Valentyna Udovenko to travel to Kyiv, where she was expected to hold a press conference about Klymentyev’s disappearance.

Matviyenko said Udovenko was officially asked by local tax authorities on September 4 not to leave the city as the business she owns there is "currently under inspection."

Klymentyev, 66, chief editor of "Novyy Styl," has been missing since August 11.

Ukrainian Interior Minister Anatoliy Mohylyov has said that Klymentyev is probably dead and that security forces are suspected of involvement in his disappearance.

Police said preliminary investigations revealed that Klymentyev was last seen on August 11 near Kharkiv's Sportivna subway station, together with an unknown man, and that both of them got into a BMW automobile.

On August 9, Klymentyev and Matviyenko took photographs of mansions belonging to regional Tax Chief Stanislav Denisyuk and three other local officials, including a former Ukrainian Security Service officer. They intended to use the pictures in an article to be published in the next issue of the paper.

Matviyenko met Klymentyev on August 11 to discuss the article and the photos. Later the same day, Matviyenko says, he was not able to reach Klymentyev by phone.

Matviyenko said that the investigation into Klymentyev's disappearance is not systematic and has made no progress. He added that a potential witness in the case, former police officer Andriy Kozyr, is also missing. Matviyenko said Kozyr had driven Klymentyev to the Pechenizke Water Reservoir to take pictures of land that might be owned by the Kharkiv Oblast tax authorities.