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Russian Journalists Union Creates Investigative Arm

Vsevolod Bogdanov, the chairman of the Union of Journalists
Vsevolod Bogdanov, the chairman of the Union of Journalists
SARATOV, RUSSIA -- Russia's Union of Journalists has announced plans to form an Agency of Journalistic Investigations, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

The announcement was made during a press conference devoted to Vadim Rogozhin, the owner of the Vzglyad media holding company who was beaten by unknown assailants in the city of Saratov on March 5.

Rogozhin's condition remains grave, RFE/RL's correspondent in Saratov reports.

The chairman of the Union of Journalists, Vsevolod Bogdanov, and the deputy chairman of the parliamentary committee on information politics, Boris Reznik, told journalists that the new agency's major goal is to fight corruption and to investigate attacks against journalists.

Bogdanov added that if Rogozhin's attackers are not found, experts from the new agency would be sent to Saratov to examine the case.

"Nasha Versia" (Our Version) newspaper Editor Petr Krasilnikov told RFE/RL that journalists are frequently involved in political standoffs, writing ordered articles for money, which adds to media woes in Russia.