Anna Politkovskaya – Russian Federation (1958 – 2006)

Linked with Children of Chechen “Spetzoperations”, and with Nation Non Grata.

She says: “People ask me: ‘Why do you write about this war?’ The reason is quite simple: we are contemporaries of this savage conflict and, in the end, we will have to answer for it”.

Anna Politkovskaya - Russian Federation (1958 - 2006).jpg

Anna Politkovskaya – Russian Federation (1958 – 2006)

Anna Politkovskaya (born 1958) is a reputed Russian journalist. In 1999, Anna started working for the ‘Novaya Gazeta’ newspaper as a special correspondent in the Northern Caucasus. She is the author of several books on the war in Chechnya. Anna advocates for the human rights of Chechen refugees and those who have suffered because of the war. She also investigates cases of corruption among high-ranking military in Chechnya. For her journalistic achievements combined with an active anti-war stand, she has received numerous Russian and international awards.(Read all on 1000peacewomen).

MOSCOW. (RIA Novosti political commentator Andrei Kolesnikov) – Anna Politkovskaya’s assassination resembles other high-profile murders of journalists, from Dmitry Kholodov to Paul Khlebnikov.

They were all investigative reporters. Politkovskaya had a famous name and wrote on a sensitive subject, Chechnya. (Read more on rian Novosti).

Alexander Politkovsky, husband of the killed journalist, says he doesn’t expect the murderer to be found. He also reports, that his wife started to get threats two years ago. However, it’s not known whether she informed the police about being threatened. (Read all on Russia-IC).

The killing of Anna Politkovskaya, one of the few journalists who had refused to keep their mouths shut and continued to criticize harshly the Putin regime, has had a sobering effect on the Russians. People responded to her death on Saturday, October 7, with anger and frustration, even those who had argued with her when she was alive, those who had laughed at her efforts and accusations she hurled at the official authorities, the Russian military and Moscow proteges in Chechnya. (Read all on … and all the thousand articles on

About the journalist confrery and Beslan: … You might think that journalists staged an action of protest in support of Shakirov. Of course not. The Russian Union of Journalists and the Media Union kept mum. Only a journalist who is loyal to the establishment is treated as “one of us”. If this is journalists’ approach to the cause that we serve, then it spells an end to the basic tenet that we are working so that people know what is happening and take the right decisions … (Read all the long article by Anna Politkovskaya on the Guardian).

Her Career: From June 1999 to 2006, she wrote columns for the news publication Novaya Gazeta. She published several award-winning books about Chechnya and President Putin’s regime[1], most recently the book Putin’s Russia. She often received death threats as a result of her work.[2] In 2001, Politkovskaya fled to Vienna, following e-mail threats claiming that OMON police officer whom she had accused of committing atrocities against civilians was looking to take revenge. The officer, Sergei Lapin, was arrested and charged in 2002, but the case against him was closed the following year.[3][4] In 2005, Lapin was convicted and jailed for torturing and “dissappearing” a Chechen civilian detainee, the case exposed by Anna Politkovskaya in the article “The Disappearing People”.

She had, on several occasions, been involved in negotiating the release of hostages, including the October 2002 Nord-Ost crisis in which Chechen rebels stormed a Moscow theatre. Politkovskaya was also involved in supporting the legal rights of victims’ families. During the Beslan school hostage crisis in September 2004 and while on her way to Beslan to help in negotiations with the hostage-takers, Politkovskaya fell violently ill and lost consciousness. Politkovskaya never made it to the school and claimed that she was poisoned after drinking tea on that flight. However, the cause of her illness has not been determined, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. While attending a conference on the freedom of press organised by Reporters Without Borders in Vienna in December 2005 Politkovskaya said: “People sometimes pay with their lives for saying aloud what they think. In fact, one can even get killed for giving me information. I am not the only one in danger. I have examples that prove it.”[5]

Politkovskaya received wide acclaim for her work in Chechnya[6], where she frequently visited hospitals and refugee camps to interview and report on wounded soldiers and suffering civilians alike. [7] She authored numerous articles critical of the war in Chechnya, including a number that specifically aimed at exposing abuses committed under the Russian-backed Chechen prime-minister, Ramzan Kadyrov. She also wrote a book critical of the Putin presidency, specifically his pursuit of the Second Chechen War. She tirelessly chronicled human rights abuses and policy failures in Chechnya and elsewhere in Russia’s North Caucasus. In 2003, she published a book called A Small Corner of Hell: Dispatches From Chechnya, which painted a picture of a hellish, brutal war in which thousands of innocent citizens have been tortured, abducted or killed at the hands of Chechen or federal authorities. Critics of Anna Politkovskaya’s articles have accused her of being partisan by concentrating on the activities of Russian federal forces, but she also strongly criticised the brutal tactics of the rebels.[8] (Read all, manly all references, on wikipedia).
More Bio: Anna Politkovskaya, special correspondent for the Russian twice-weekly newspaper Novaya Gazeta, published in Moscow. She received her Diploma in Journalism from Moscow State University in 1980, and has since worked on a number of newspapers as a correspondent and editor. She has a particular interest in Chechnya, and has written extensively on the subject, including the book A Dirty War: A Russian Reporter in Chechnya (Harvill, 2001). She acted as a mediator in the Nord-Ost theatre siege in Moscow in 2002, and has been the recipient of numerous international honours, including:

  • First Prize of the Lettre Ulysses Award (2003)
  • Hermann-Kesten Medal, PEN Germany (2003)
  • Courage in Journalism Award from the International Women’s Media Foundation (2002)
  • Most Courageous Defence of Free Expression from Index on Censorship (2002)
  • Special Award of Amnesty International (2001). (Read all on english PEN).


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