Denis Voronenkov..critic of Vladimir Putin..assassinated in Kiev street
A former Russian lawmaker who fled to Ukraine last year was gunned down on a sidewalk in Kiev on Thursday morning, the latest in a string of politically hued killings of critics of the Russian government abroad, going back more than a decade.
The killing coincided with a fire and explosion at a gigantic Ukrainian army ammunition depot in the country’s east that authorities blamed on Russia, suggesting an escalation of Russian special operations inside Ukraine.
Ukraine’s president, Petro Poroshenko, said it was “no accident” that the killing of the lawmaker, Denis Voronenkov, occurred at the same time as the ammunition depot explosion. Ukraine’s military said a drone may have touched off the blast, near the city of Kharkiv, sending tank shells firing in all directions and forcing the evacuation of 20,000 people.
The assassination comes two days after a lawyer representing the family of Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian auditor who died in prison after uncovering a $US230 million ($300 million) fraud, suffered severe head injuries after plunging from his Moscow apartment building.
Though Kiev police said it was too early to determine a motive in the killing, Poroshenko blamed the Russian government for “an act of state terrorism.”
Voronenkov was a member of the Russian parliament before defecting to Ukraine last year with his wife, Maria Maksakova, a fellow Russian politician and a Bolshoi opera singer, saying they were escaping political prosecution.
In Kiev, the couple had kept a high profile, speaking out frequently against Russian policy in Ukraine. But Russian authorities accused them of corruption, and said they had left to avoid prosecution.
In Ukraine, Voronenkov had promised to testify for the prosecution in a criminal case against Ukraine’s former Russia-aligned president, Viktor Yanukovych, and to provide an insider’s information about Russian government deliberations and actions during the annexation of Crimea in 2014.
nobody knows who killed him or why..a putin critic so you assume he killed him..but espionage works in ways a little bit more intertwined than that..
“Ukraine’s president, Petro Poroshenko, said it was “no accident” that the killing of the lawmaker, Denis Voronenkov, occurred at the same time as the ammunition depot explosion. Ukraine’s military said a drone may have touched off the blast, near the city of Kharkiv, sending tank shells firing in all directions and forcing the evacuation of 20,000 people.”