MOSCOW, September 5 (RIA Novosti) – The murder of International Information Agency Rossiya Segodnya photojournalist Andrei Stenin is a war crime and an attempt to conceal the information he had about the real development of events in the south-east of Ukraine, Amin Nasser, a lawyer from Egypt has told RIA Novosti.
“In case with Andrei, I do not exclude that he had collected important evidence about the events in the east of Ukraine. That is why his death can be connected with an attempt of some individuals in Ukraine to prevent the unveiling of this information,” Nasser said.
The lawyer added that Stenin’s murder, as well as attacks on other journalists, is a war crime, because it is an attack of armed individuals, representing one side of the conflict, on a civilian unarmed person.
Nasser also stated that reporters working in the conflict zones should be protected by the international law, which currently has significant loopholes.
“I think it makes sense for the UN Human Rights Council to pay attention to the situation and try to provide a more solid foundation for the safety of the media. It is necessary to tighten international laws against those who commit crimes against journalists, he said.
Andrei Stenin is the fourth Russian journalist killed while covering the ongoing events in the war-torn east of Ukraine.
Stenin went missing in eastern Ukraine on August 5. Sources suggested that the Ukrainian military could have detained the journalist, but Kiev has never officially confirmed the information. Several events in support of the journalist were held around the world while his fate remained unknown.
On Wednesday, Rossiya Segodnya Director General Dmitry Kiselev said that, according to information from the Russian Investigative Committee, Stenin died about a month ago near Donetsk when the car he was travelling in while on an editorial assignment was shot at and torched on a highway just outside the city.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has demanded that Kiev launch a complete and unbiased investigation into the murder of Russian journalist.
A farewell ceremony for Stenin was held Friday at the Rossiya Segodnya international press center for those wishing to pay their last respects to the photographer. The memorial service was held from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Moscow time (06:00 to 08:00 GMT). Stenin was buried at Troyekurovskoye Cemetery in Moscow.
The International News Agency Rossiya Segodnya decided to name an international competition of photojournalism after Stenin and to establish a grant in his memory.
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