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Russian Investigation Into Estemirova Killing Prolonged Again

Flowers are placed near a photo of journalist and human rights activist Natalya Estemirova during a rally in Moscow following her killing in July 2009.
The official investigation into the killing of Russian-Chechen rights activist and journalist Natalya Estemirova has been extended again.

Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin said on August 15 that the probe into the reporter's death will continue until October 14.

The investigation has been extended a number of times since her death.

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

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

On August 15, Markin reiterated that an alleged militant fugitive, Alkhazur Bashayev, and three unidentified individuals are the prime suspects.

Markin added that investigators found the pistol used in the killing and linked it to Bashayev.

Based on reporting by Interfax and ITAR-TASS