Andrew Ryvkin, who joined the staff of GQ as a political columnist last month, said on Twitter that he was called Tuesday by someone who introduced himself as a reporter from news agency Interfax. On his way to the Interfax office, Minayev and Bagirov grabbed him on the street and proceeded to hit him in the face, Ryvkin said.
After Minayev and Bagirov had ceased hitting him, they said they would "beat him to death" next time, Ryvkin told Gazeta.ru.
Ryvkin wrote on Twitter that he suspected the incident was political, noting Bagirov's role as an official representative of president-elect Vladimir Putin during Putin's campaign and Minayev's activity in President Dmitry Medvedev's so-called "Big Government" project.
Minayev, also writing on Twitter, admitted his participation in the assault and said it was in response to Ryvkin having used a vulgar epithet in relation to Minayev in a recent article.
"For clarity, 25 min ago I dealt @andrewryvkin a couple of slaps, for an insult of a personal nature. It bears no relation to politics," he wrote.
Ryvkin also claimed his attackers had shown passing riot police a document that made the officers leave the scene of the attack without intervening.
He said he would file a complaint with police regarding the incident.