2 suspects in Nemtsov murder detained – FSB chief
Two suspects in the high-profile murder of opposition politician Boris Nemtsov have been detained, the Federal Security Service (FSB) reported.
According to FSB chief Aleksandr Bortnikov, the suspects were identified as Anzor Gubashev and Zaur Dadayev.
Bortnikov said both suspects come from Russia’s southern region of the North Caucasus, a restive place with insurgency and crime problems.
The Investigative Committee confirmed the two detainees are implicated in both organizing and executing the hit on Nemtsov.
“We are continuing our work to establish which individuals may be involved in this crime,” the committee’s spokesman Vladimir Markin said.
Nemstov, a former Russian governor and deputy prime minister, who became a prominent opposition figure in the early 2000s, was gunned down in central Moscow on February 27. The assassination triggered worldwide condemnation and calls for swift investigation.
The politician was killed on a bridge over the Moscow River near the Kremlin as he was returning home with a female companion. The shooter hit Nemtsov in the back four times and fled in a getaway car.
The crime is being investigated by a joint task force, which includes the police, the FSB and the Investigative Committee.
Investigators are looking into five possible motives behind Nemtsov’s assassination. According to Vladimir Markin, spokesman for the Investigative Committee, the murder may have been a provocation to destabilize the political situation in Russia.
It could also be linked to threats Nemtsov received over his stance on the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris, or the current war in Ukraine. The politician’s business activities and a possible assault related to his personal life are also being looked into.
The prime witness to the crime, Ukrainian model, Anna Duritskaya, who was accompanying Nemtsov, has since returned to Kiev. She told the media she was unable to identify the killer.
The killing happened two days ahead of an opposition rally Nemtsov helped organize. The rally was replaced with a mourning march in central Moscow, which drew tens of thousands of people.