02 Nov 2017 Lvl. 1
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Alert created on: 02 Nov 2017 n° 126/2017 Russian Federation

Continued Impunity for Murder of Journalist Gadzhimurad Kamalov in 2011

Source of threatUnknown
CategoryImpunity for murder
Partner Article 19 EFJ/IFJ Index RSF
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Partner Article 19 EFJ/IFJ Index RSF
On the occasion of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists, Article 19 is submitting an alert regarding the ongoing impunity for the murder of journalist, Gadzhimurad Kamalov, on 15 December 2011 in Makhachkala, the capital city of the Republic of Dagestan, Russia. Kamalov, founder and editor of the popular Chernovik newspaper, one of the few independent media in Dagestan, was shot dead by an unknown assailant as he left his office to go home. A vocal critic of corruption and abuse of power, Kamalov and other journalists at Chernovik, had previously experienced a wide-range of attacks, from harassment, threats, and physical violence, to criminal charges and confiscation of copies of the newspaper.

The Dagestani authorities have failed to properly investigate Kamalov’s murder, failing to find any suspect or bring charges. Although there is little publicly available information about the status of the investigation, at the time of writing, complete impunity in Kamalov’s murder remains. Investigators have failed to explore leads brought forward by Kamalov’s family, and refused their requests for the case to be investigated by Russia’s Federal Security Service. In 2013, Kamalov’s brother told the Committee to Protect Journalists that they did not rule out the involvement of Dagestani officials in the murder.

In spring 2013, Orkhan Jemal, a local journalist in Dagestan published an investigation into Kamalov’s death, alleging the involvement of a Dagestani MP in the murder. The MP denied the allegation and brought a defamation case against Orkhan Jemal; however, this was subsequently dropped.
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