Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya was murdered one year ago in Moscow. She was a tireless campaigner for human rights, dedicated to groups in Russian society that were forgotten or even hated in the rush to embrace the authoritarianism of President Putin. And finding her killer is unsurprisingly getting nowhere:
The independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta and Russian prosecutors know the identity of the man who killed Anna Politkovskaya, its correspondent who was slain in a contract-style killing one year ago, according to its editor and a special report planned for publication on Monday.
But the identity of the person who ordered the killing has not been determined, and the man who shot Ms. Politkovskaya has not been found and arrested, the editor said Friday. He added that more time was needed to investigate the case.
“The organizer is free,” the paper’s editor in chief, Dmitry A. Muratov, said in an interview. “This crime cannot be considered solved.”
The new details shed further light on a case that has drawn international scrutiny, and suggested that a degree of progress has been made in an investigation that Ms. Politkovskaya’s friends and supporters worry has been stalled and undermined by internal disarray.
I was honoured to meet Anna in 2006 during the Sydney Writer’s Festival. I’ve rarely met a more kind-hearted and determined journalist, almost oblivious to the risks involved in her work (my interview with her is here.)
She was a giant in an industry that prefers to curry favour with power. Her work will be remembered long after the “sanctioned leak” hacks are forgotten.