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Russian Journalist Attacked After Being Labelled 'Spy' By Blogger

Andrey Stenin / RIA Novosti / Wikicommons

A journalist has been attacked in the Siberian city of Barnaul the day after a local blogger described him as a spy.

Grigory Pasko, whose work revealed that the Russian Navy was dumping nuclear waste in the Sea of Japan, was assaulted by two men while visiting the city on Tuesday. He had traveled to Barnaul in Russia's Altai region to lecture at the local university.

The men hit Pasko over the head, and told him to “get out of our town, or we'll get you,” the journalist told the Ekho Moskvy radio station.

“I've been threatened for the past two years, but physical violence is something new. I am sure that the attack is related to my professional activities,” he told activist site Activatica.The perpetrators of these attacks are obvious. It has all the marks of the FSB.”

The attack followed an article published on the Barnaul edition of the Monavista news site Monday, which called Pasko a “foreign agent.”

The piece, written by “patriotic blogger” Andrei Marvich, called Pasko a spy, claiming “they do not like traitors in the Altai [region],  as well as spies and those who kill Russians in Novorossia [separatist-held regions of eastern Ukraine].”

Pasko was arrested the FSB on espionage charges while carrying out a journalistic investigation in 2001 and was jailed for four years. He was released in 2003, after being named as a “prisoner of conscience” by Amnesty International.

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