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IMI, Freedom House and ZMINA met investigator to discuss murderous attack against Vadym Komarov

On May 14th, the IMI’s executive together with its partners of the Freedom House and the Center for Human Rights ZMINA had a meeting in Cherkassy with Yevhen Rogachev, head of the National Police Investigation Department in Cherkassy region.

During this meeting, the parties talked of the investigation of the attack made against the local journalist and video blogger Vadym Komarov.

As the police official informed, the investigation went on and the office of public prosecutor was taking it under its special control. For now, the journalist remains in a medically induced coma, his condition remains serious.

The IMI delegates spoke as well with Cherkassy journalists over the issues of freedom of speech condition in the region and the murderous attack on Vadym Komarov.

The journalists supposed that the attack against Vadym Komarov would have been contract-style crime and aimed to intimidate the journalistic community as a whole. They are convinced that in case if this crime would not been investigated and its perpetrators would not been found, the journalistic investigations will cease to be in the region.

IMI informed, some unknown person beat journalist and video blogger Vadym Komarov on May 4th. The victim got open cranio-cerebral trauma. The case of robbery is not plausible, as the assaulter took nor money of the injured person, neither his telephone. The physicians found that, the most probably, the penetrating blow would be delivered with a hammer, so the aim would be to commit murder.

The investigator officers at first instituted proceedings on the grounds of articel 121 paragraph 1st (“Intentional grievous bodily harm”) of the Criminal Code, but then they reclassified it as an premeditated attempted murder (article 15 and 115 of the Criminal Code).

Komarov was known for his investigations of corruption in municipal council, illegal real estate development and condition of penitentiary establishment.

It was not for the first time that Vadym Komarov had been assaulted. On September 7th, 2016, in Cherkassy some unknown person fired a shot at Vadym Komarov, but the bullet hit the wall. The police had instituted the criminal proceeding based on the article 269 “Hooliganism act” of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

On July 18, 2017, Vadym Komarov had been beaten by one of employees of a construction company controlled by a elected person of the regional council. The reason would be the journalist was protesting against building up near Dnipro river.

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