Russian media reported that a journalist who wrote about corruption in Russia’s troubled southern region of Dagestan was briefly kidnapped and badly beaten on April 5 in an attack that he has called retribution for his work.
Journalist Vyacheslav Starodubets told the Meduza news website that he was grabbed in the city of Derbent by four masked men who drove him to the mountains where they put a hood over his head and beat him.
Starodubets said he was hospitalized with bad bruising later on April 5 after his assailants drove him back to a hotel, smashed his phone, and abandoned him.
In 2014, Starodubets founded an online portal, My Derbent, which reports on local corruption. He also ran a blog called the Pearl of the South.
He has reported the incident to Russian prosecutors.