U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesperson
For Immediate Release
Statement by Heather Nauert, Spokesperson
July 12, 2018
This week, we remember Russian human rights defender and Novaya Gazeta journalist Natalya Estemirova and Forbes journalist and editor, Paul Klebnikov, an American citizen.
Ms. Estemirova, renowned for her writing and activism on human rights abuses in Chechnya, was kidnapped and killed on July 15, 2009. Mr. Klebnikov was murdered on July 9, 2004, likely in retaliation for reporting on official corruption and graft. Neither the killers nor those who ordered these crimes have been brought to justice, and the United States remains troubled by the ongoing pattern of intimidation and violence against those who express dissent across Russia, including independent journalists, members of the political opposition, and civil society.
We honor the memories of Ms. Estemirova and Mr. Klebnikov by calling for an end to the impunity for human rights abuses in Chechnya and elsewhere in Russia and by reiterating U.S. support for brave journalists and human rights defenders in Russia and around the world.