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Russian Journalist Vows to Continue Visiting Chechnya After Brutal Attack

Yelena Milashina at a Moscow hospital. @zhivoygvozd / YouTube

Russian journalist Yelena Milashina has vowed to continue traveling to the republic of Chechnya despite a violent attack this week that left her hospitalized with multiple bone fractures and a brain injury.

“I will continue to travel to Chechnya, whether [Chechen leader Ramzan] Kadyrov wants me to or not,” Milashina told the independent media outlet Zhivoy Gvozd during a morning news program Friday. 

“I need to go back to the scene of the crime,” Milashina said from a Moscow hospital where she was transferred after Tuesday's attack in the Chechen capital of Grozny.

Milashina, who has covered Chechen rights abuses for the disbanded independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta, was traveling to a court hearing with a lawyer when they were stopped and attacked by a group of unknown assailants.

On Wednesday, Russia’s Investigative Committee, which probes major crimes, launched a criminal investigation into the attack. 

During Friday’s news program, Milashina recalled that her assailants said they were part of the same group that had attacked her and another lawyer in February 2020.

Milashina told Zhivoy Gvozd journalists that a criminal investigation into the 2020 attack remained unresolved. 

Kadyrov has publicly threatened Milashina with physical violence for her coverage of the North Caucasus region which the Kremlin loyalist has ruled with an iron fist since 2007.

Milashina temporarily fled Russia in early 2022 following Kadyrov’s threat to “destroy” her.

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