‘Blame the Russian Federation for My Death,’ Journalist Writes Before Self-Immolation

Irina Slavina died at the scene.Irina Slavina / VK

A Russian journalist has died after setting herself on fire outside police headquarters in the city of Nizhny Novgorod, Russian media reported Friday.

Irina Slavina, the editor-in-chief of the KozaPress news outlet died at the scene, the Baza and 112 Telegram channels reported.https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fslavirina%2Fposts%2F3539650582765000&width=500

“I ask you to blame the Russian Federation for my death,” Slavina wrote on her Facebook page about an hour before her death.

The previous day, she said local security forces raided her home in search of evidence of her involvement with the opposition.

“They were looking for brochures, leaflets, invoices of [pro-democracy movement] Open Russia, possibly an icon with the face of [exiled oligarch] Mikhail Khodorkovsky,” she wrote following the early-Thursday raid.

“I don’t have any of this,” she wrote in her Facebook post. “But they took away what they found — all the flash drives, my laptop, my daughter’s laptop, the computer, phones — not just mine, but also my husband’s — a bunch of my notebooks that I scribbled on during press conferences. I’m left without the means of production.”

Regional investigators said they have launched a pre-investigation check into the death but have not confirmed Slavina’s identity.

Pavel Chikov, head of the international human rights group Agora, wrote that the organization previously worked with Slavina after the authorities opened cases against her for “disrespect for the authorities” and spreading “fake news.” The group had filed a complaint to the European Court of Human Rights on her behalf, he added.

(C)MOSCOW TIMES 2020

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