Russia Retains Place on CPJ’s Impunity Index

MOSCOW, May 3 (RIA Novosti) – Russia ranked ninth on the annual Impunity Index by the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, which lists unsolved journalist murders.

Fourteen murders of journalists remain unsolved in Russia since 2003, the most recent being the shooting of North Caucasus-based journalist Kazbek Gekkiyev in December, the nonprofit group said in its report, released Thursday.

Nevertheless, the watchdog praised Russia for “a general decline in deadly anti-press violence and a handful of partly successful prosecutions in journalist murders.”

The report cited the probe into the 2006 shooting of investigative reporter Anna Politkovskaya as a positive example. A former police officer was convicted in December of assisting the murder, though the investigation never named the organizers of the murder. Politkovskaya had a record of criticizing the Kremlin and the North Caucasus authorities over alleged rights abuses.

Russia was featured in the top 10 of all installments of the Impunity Index, compiled since 2008. It was also ninth last year.

The 2013 rating was topped by Iraq, followed by Somalia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Colombia, Afghanistan, Mexico and Pakistan.

The only change from 2012 was Nepal dropping off the index entirely, with Brazil rising instead to enter the top 10.

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