JUNE 28, 2005
Posted: July 7, 2005

Nikolai Kochurov, Severodvinsky Rabochy


Kochurov, editor-in-chief of Severodvinsk’s independent newspaper, Severodvinsky Rabochy, was beaten by two unidentified assailants and hospitalized with head and arm injuries. Assailants waiting in the entry to Kochurov’s apartment building struck him with a heavy object as the journalist left for work that morning, according to several local news reports. Police in Severodvinsk, a city in the Arkhangelsk region of northern Russia, opened a criminal case but did not immediately identify suspects.

Investigators and colleagues said Kochurov’s work was a possible motive for the attack. A mobile phone, money, and other belongings were not stolen, according to local news reports.

Severodvinsky Rabochy demonstrates the wide spectrum of public opinions,” Olga Ovchinnikova, the paper’s deputy editor-in-chief, told CPJ in a telephone interview. “Some people could dislike negative information toward them published in the media.”

Kochurov did not tell his colleagues about any threats, Ovchinnikova said, and Severodvinsky Rabochy had not published any recent stories that were particularly controversial. The newspaper publishes four days per week.