Russian journalist attacked in Moscow

Radio presenter Sergei Aslanyan in hospital after being stabbed 20 times by attacker who lured him out of his home

A Russian journalist is in hospital after being lured out of his home and stabbed 20 times late on Monday night in the latest attack on a member of the press.

Sergei Aslanyan, 46, works for Radio Mayak and spent 10 years as a presenter on Echo Moskvy, Russia's leading liberal radio station.

Police sources said Aslanyan received a call from an unknown number just before midnight, inviting him outside for a chat. After leaving his home in southern Moscow, he was stabbed repeatedly in the chest, neck and arms by a man, or several men, wielding a knife.

"The victim has been hospitalised, his life is not in danger," a police source told the Itar-Tass news agency.

Police have opened an investigation into the attack.

The Izvestiya newspaper suggested the attack could have been linked to a recent radio appearance during which Aslanyan insulted the prophet Muhammad.

The programme prompted an angry response among some Muslims, with an imam in the eastern city of Kazan asking prosecutors to investigate the journalist.

Others linked the attack to Aslanyan's reporting on Russia's auto industry and corrupt traffic police.

Russia maintains one of the world's worst records for freedom of the press, with journalists regularly attacked and pressured because of their work. More than 50 journalists have been killed in Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Most of the murders, including the 2006 killing of investigative reporter Anna Politkovskaya, remain unsolved.

Diana Khachatryan, a journalist who works at Politkovskaya's paper, Novaya Gazeta, said on Monday she had received threatening telephone calls after exposing the inner workings of a congress run by Vladimir Putin's United Russia party.

Khachatryan said a woman claiming to be from the Young Guard, United Russia's youth wing, called her at 1pm on Monday, hours after her article exposing the theatrical aspect of the congress, was published by Novaya Gazeta, a leading liberal newspaper and website.

"She said that I behaved improperly, like a rat, and if I don't take down the text, it will be bad," Khachatryan told the Novaya Gazeta website.

"She said, 'Think about it yourself – take down the article. If you don't want to, then we'll see what comes next'."

Novaya Gazeta said it "approaches any fact of a threat towards its journalists with all seriousness and will demand an official investigation".


Miriam Elder in Moscow

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Russian journalist beaten unconscious outside office

Attack on Anatoly Adamchuk as he left Zhukovsky office occurred 48 hours after another reporter was beaten with iron bar

Tom Parfitt in Moscow

08, Nov, 2010 @8:03 PM

Article image
Russian journalist attacked with iron bar regains consciousness

Oleg Kashin, a reporter with the influential Kommersant daily, was attacked early on Saturday by two men

Tom Parfitt in Moscow

12, Nov, 2010 @5:25 PM

Article image
Thousands to march in Moscow in support of Russian journalist
Ivan Golunov’s arrest on drug-dealing charges is seen as an attempt to silence his reporting

Marc Bennetts in Moscow

11, Jun, 2019 @1:40 PM

Article image
Russian journalist gunned down in violent republic of Dagestan
Masked killer fired 14 rounds at Khadzhimurad Kamalov as he left his newspaper's office in Makhachkala

Tom Parfitt and Miriam Elder in Moscow

16, Dec, 2011 @4:56 PM

Article image
Kremlin says mistakes may have been made over arrest of journalist
Comments come as Russia’s leading papers call for inquiry into case of Ivan Golunov

Marc Bennetts in Moscow, and agencies

10, Jun, 2019 @3:32 PM

Article image
Russian judge rejects WSJ reporter Evan Gershkovich’s detention appeal
US journalist to remain in detention until trial at end of May on charges of espionage

Shaun Walker

18, Apr, 2023 @11:49 AM

Article image
Ukraine's president defends faked murder of Russian journalist
Staged death of Arkady Babchenko prompts questions about alleged ‘hit-list’

Shaun Walker in Moscow

05, Jun, 2018 @5:58 PM

Article image
Protests continue after Russian journalist released pending trial
Supporters of Ivan Golunov want investigation into officers who arrested and beat him

Andrew Roth in Moscow

09, Jun, 2019 @10:32 AM

Article image
Russian journalist cleared of slander in road controversy
Court overturns verdict against Mikhail Beketov, who accused government official over forest clearance near Moscow

Tom Parfitt in Moscow

10, Dec, 2010 @6:40 PM

Article image
French journalist killed in Russian rocket strike in Ukraine
AFP video coordinator Arman Soldin, 32, who was ‘totally dedicated to his craft’, died in attack near Bakhmut

Luke Harding in Mykolaiv and agencies

09, May, 2023 @7:08 PM