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Police Mum on Charges for Alexeyeva's Attacker

Alexeyeva, second left, leaving Park Kultury with opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, right, after being hit in the head. Mikhail Metzel

Moscow police refused to say Thursday whether a man detained for striking 82-year-old human rights activist Lyudmila Alexeyeva in the head would face charges.

Video footage shows a man striking Lyudmila Alexeyeva across the head as she gave media interviews after laying flowers at the Park Kultury metro station late Wednesday, the site of one of two suicide bombings that killed 39 people earlier in the week.

"You're still alive? Bitch!" Alexeyeva's assailant shouted before being wrestled to the ground.

The footage can be seen at 

Oleg Orlov, head of the Memorial human rights group, was standing beside Alexeyeva when she was struck and shouted: "Beast, provocateur, grab him!"

Police detained the unidentified attacker but declined to say Thursday whether he would be charged.

"We are checking the information, and we do not want to give any comments at the moment," a police spokesman said.

Alexeyeva, a Kremlin critic and founder of the country's oldest rights group, the Moscow Helsinki group, said Thursday that she did not believe the man had acted alone.

"I think it was an order from some organization because there cannot be any personal motivation as I do not know that person," she said.

"Everything is fine now, I feel well," she added. "The strike was not a serious one."

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