‘Murdered’ Russia journalist turns up alive
Banglapress Online: Arkady Babchenko, the Russian journalist who was reported to have been shot dead in Kiev, has turned up alive at a news conference in Ukraine. Babchenko emerged at a police press conference on Wednesday afternoon in front of journalists who had been expecting updates on the investigation into his murder.
Vasily Gritsak, head of the Ukrainian security service, told reporters the agency had faked Babchenko’s death to catch people who were trying to kill him.
On Tuesday, Ukrainian police had said Babchenko, a Kremlin critic and veteran Russian war correspondent, was shot three times in the back as he left his apartment to buy bread. A government official told the media that Babchenko, 41, had died in the ambulance to the hospital.
But on Wednesday, officials said Babchenko staged his death in coordination with Ukrainian police as part of an investigation into threats made against his life. The plan had been in place for more than a month. Police said they had made one arrest in connection with the operation.
Speaking to journalists, Babchenko apologised, saying: “I have been forced to bury my friends and colleagues many times and I know the sickening feeling.”
Apparently he had not even told his closest family members about the plan.
“Special apologies to my wife, Olechka, there was no other option,” Babchenko said to a room of visibly stunned journalists. “The operation was under preparation for two months.” It was not immediately clear how Babchenko faking his death led to the apprehension of the suspect.
Babchenko fled Russia in 2017 after receiving threats over a post he made on social media. A number of journalists and other dissidents have been killed in recent years in Kiev in murders that remain unsolved.The Guardian.