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Widow Of Slain Ingush Activist Survives Explosion

Maksharip Aushev was killed on October 25 (photo:
Maksharip Aushev was killed on October 25 (photo:
NAZRAN, Ingushetia -- The widow of a recently slain Ingush human rights activist has been hospitalized with serious injuries after her car exploded in the Ingushetian city of Nazran, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Fatima Dzhaniyeva, 27, is the widow of prominent human rights activist Maksharip Aushev, who was shot dead on October 25 as he drove his car in the nearby republic of Kabardino-Balkaria. One of her brothers also survived the December 16 explosion, but her mother and another brother died.

Magomed Khazbiyev, an opposition politician in the North Caucasian republic, said the bomb attack on the family was politically motivated.

Khazbiyev told RFE/RL that police at a checkpoint near the Ingushetian capital, Magas, stopped their car. The police asked them to leave the car and then searched it. They were then allowed to drive on, but the car exploded just minutes after leaving the checkpoint.

"I think those who did that wanted to warn everyone in Ingushetia who may want to speak up and tell the world about the real situation here," Khazbiyev said.

He added that the attack might have also been retaliation for the U.S. State Department awarding its annual Human Rights Defenders Award posthumously to Aushev last week.

An Ingush activist and businessman, Aushev was a strong critic of former Ingushetian President Murat Zvazikov and briefly ran the opposition website

His relatives and colleagues said he was killed because of his professional activities.