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Gudkov Appeals for Parliamentary Probe Into Nemtsov's Murder

State Duma Deputy Dmitry Gudkov

State Duma Deputy Dmitry Gudkov has moved to initiate a parliamentary investigation into the murder of Boris Nemtsov, an opposition politician gunned down steps from the Kremlin last week.

In a letter addressed to Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin, Gudkov said that widely circulated theories of the Russian government's involvement in Nemtsov's assassination were undermining trust in state institutions.

"In these conditions, the Russian parliament must do everything for this provocative murder to be investigated competently and objectively, in order for the results of the investigation to deserve popular trust and for this crime not to mark the beginning of [a phase of] criminal and political terror in Russia," said the letter, which Gudkov uploaded to his Facebook page Wednesday.

Gudkov, a longtime Nemtsov ally, was on the front line of Sunday's silent march held in the slain politician's honor in Moscow. Gudkov told The Moscow Times last week he thought Russia's current political climate had allowed for Nemtsov's murder.

Nemtsov was shot dead as he was walking across Moscow's Bolshoi Moskvoretsky Bridge on Friday night. Russian investigators have advanced various theories about the murder, none of which address Nemtsov's opposition activity as a possible motive for his assassination.

President Vladimir Putin described the murder Wednesday as a shameful tragedy with a political subtext in comments before the Interior Ministry.

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