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Russian Journalist Attacked After Investigation into Local Official — Reports

Dmitry Kosenko

An independent news outlet in southern Russia has reported that its journalist was attacked over the weekend in an incident it linked to a corruption investigation into a local official.

An increasing number of civil activists, politicians and journalists have been assaulted in Russia since 2015, the Agora human rights group said in a report published late last year, warning about the normalization of state-sanctioned violence.

Unknown assailants beat up Dmitry Kosenko near his newspaper’s office in the Black Sea coastal town of Tuapse on Friday night, the local Vash Golos news outlet, where Kosenko is editor, reported.

“I believe that this attack is exclusively tied to my professional activities,” Kosenko, who is also a member of the Kremlin-friendly A Just Russia party, was quoted as saying.

Kosenko alleged in an investigation late last year that the family of Tuapse district head Anatoly Rusin had received a 15 million ruble ($226,700) waterfront land plot ahead of other families.

Vash Golos reported it had faced multiple threats to stop the investigation into Rusin’s family.

“If at first they used administrative resources – persecutions, firing the family members of the editorial staff, searches in the editorial office, equipment seizures and searches at the founder’s house – they’ve now decided to take extreme measures,” Kosenko said.

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