France was shocked to learn of the pardon granted in Russia to Sergei Khadjikurbanov, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison for his role in the murder of Novaya Gazeta journalist Anna Politkovskaya in 2006.
France deplores this cynical decision, which comes nearly a month after the sad anniversary of Anna Politkovskaya’s murder. On that occasion, France paid tribute to the memory of this remarkable woman.
The first ever Politkovskaya-Soldin Prize for Courage in Journalism, established in honor of Anna Politkovskaya and Arman Soldin by the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs and 2021 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Dmitry Muratov, was awarded on November 2, on the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists.
By linking this pardon with Mr. Khadjikurbanov’s participation in the Russian aggression in Ukraine, Russia has once again demonstrated its enormous cynicism, as it is excusing a crime against independent journalism at the same time that it is hailing the aggression of which it is guilty on a daily basis in Ukraine in its illegal, unjustified war.