20:30 GMT30 October 2020
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    Murder of Russian Politician Boris Nemtsov (80)
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    A family lawyer of killed Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov said that Nemtsov had been receiving threats and various provocations on social media sites prior to his Friday murder.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov had received threats on social media sites prior to his Friday murder, Vadim Prohorov, a family lawyer, has told RIA Novosti, suggesting that the killing had political motives.

    "Threats and various provocations were constant – a toilet was thrown on his car, ammonia was poured over it, eggs were thrown at it…A few months ago threats started coming in on social media, which prompted us to contact law enforcement authorities…But, I think, it's unlikely that those who did this would give any warnings," Prohorov said.

    According to the Russian Interior Ministry, Nemtsov was killed at 11:40 p.m. Moscow time on Friday (20:40 GMT), when several shots were fired at him from a car, while he was walking with a female companion from Ukraine in central Moscow.

    Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said after the murder that Russian President Vladimir Putin considers the killing, which was likely an ordered one, a provocative act.

    Meanwhile, a representative of the Russian Investigative Committee has told journalists that investigators were not excluding the ordered killing scenario and were also considering possible political motives behind the murder.

    "I think that the motive [for the murder] was his [Nemtsov's] political activity," Prohorov told RIA Novosti, adding that Nemtsov did not have any personal or business-related problems.

    Meanwhile in an interview with the Russian Kommersant daily, Prohorov said that Nemtsov could have been killed by "those who have returned from hotspots in Ukraine's southeast".

    Nemtsov, who served as Russian deputy prime minister under the country's former President Boris Yeltsin, voiced opposition to the current Russian government, Putin and his policies, although the politician was more involved in business than politics in recent years.

    Nemtsov 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. His killing comes one day ahead of the Vesna ("Spring") opposition rally planned to be held in Moscow on March 1. The rally had been given a go-ahead by the Russian authorities.

    Murder of Russian Politician Boris Nemtsov (80)
    murder, Boris Nemtsov, Russia
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