According to the Russian Interior Ministry, Nemtsov was killed in the Russian capital at 11:40 p.m. Moscow time on Friday (20:40 GMT), after several shots were fired at him from a car, which drove by while the Russian politician was walking across the Zamoskvoretskiy bridge with a female companion from Ukraine.
Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama has condemned the killing, saying in a Friday statement that he admired Nemtsov’s “courageous dedication to the struggle against corruption in Russia” and appreciated the politician's “willingness to share his candid views" with him when Nemtsov met with Obama in Moscow in 2009.
The Russian Investigative Committee is at the moment considering several crime scenarios, with some of them linking Nemtsov's murder to events in Ukraine, the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack in Paris and the politician's business activity.
Meanwhile, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin, the murder was a provocation and most likely a contract killing. Nemtsov was killed a day before the Vesna ("Spring") opposition rally planned to be held in Moscow on March 1.
Prohorov also said that Nemtsov had received several threats on social media prior to the murder. Meanwhile, Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin said on Saturday that investigators had information that Nemtsov had been receiving threats linked to his stance on the January shooting at the Paris office of the Charlie Hebdo magazine.
Nemtsov has been in Russian politics for over two decades. He served as deputy prime minister and energy minister under the country's former President Boris Yeltsin. He voiced opposition to the current Russian government, co-chaired the RPR-PARNAS (Republican Party of Russia – People's Freedom Party) since 2012 and was also one of the leaders of the liberal Solidarnost movement.