Publication: Monitor Volume: 4 Issue: 31

A retired officer, Colonel Pavel Popovskikh, 51, former head of the intelligence division of the Airborne Troops command, has been formally charged with organizing and participating in the murder in 1994 of journalist Dmitry Kholodov. (NTV, February 12) Kholodov, a 27-year-old journalist with the newspaper Moskovsky komsomolets, was killed by a booby-trapped briefcase days before he was due to testify to the Russian parliament on his investigations into military corruption. According to Popovskikh’s wife, the police "quietly assured her" that her husband would undoubtedly be shot. (Kommersant-daily, February 11)

Meanwhile, former defense minister Pavel Grachev is in the hospital with a concussion after a road accident. (Itar-Tass, February 15) Grachev was defense minister at the time of Kholodov’s murder and was one of the main targets of his investigations. Last week, Grachev was questioned in connection with the Kholodov murder case. (Ekho Moskvy radio, February 11)

OMON Trial Underway in Riga.