Euro MPs call for international probe into Nemtsov murder

The European Parliament on Thursday called for an independent international investigation into the murder of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov.

Strasbourg: The European Parliament on Thursday called for an independent international investigation into the murder of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov.

Lawmakers voted in favour of a motion saying that Russia under President Vladimir Putin had created an atmosphere which was "fertile ground" for such crimes.

Nemtsov, 55, a former deputy prime minister who became an outspoken Putin critic, was shot four times in the back as he walked along a bridge near the Kremlin on February 27.

The motion "requests an independent international investigation into the murder" and suggested that the OSCE, Council of Europe and UN could play a role.

The MEPs called it the "most significant political murder in recent Russian history" and said Kremlin propaganda is turning Russia into a "state of repression, hate speech and fear".

The EU parliament further criticised Russia for refusing to allow European figures, including a senior MEP, into the country to attend Nemtsov`s funeral.

Russian authorities have rounded up five suspects for the murder but a Kremlin rights advisor said Wednesday that a key suspect likely confessed under torture.

The killing was the highest-profile murder of an opposition leader during Putin`s 15 years in charge.

Friends of Nemtsov said he had been working on a report containing what he described as proof of secret Russian military involvement in the bloody uprising by pro-Moscow militias in eastern Ukraine. 

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