Larisa Yudina

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Yudina, editor of Sovietskaya Kalmykia Segodnya, the only alternative news outlet in Kalmykia, was found dead of multiple stab wounds and a fractured skull on the outskirts of Elista, capital of the Russian autonomous republic of Kalmykia. Yudina, a political activist, was frequently harassed and threatened for her exposés of local corruption and hard-line rule by the republic’s president, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. On the day of her disappearance, June 7, she went to meet a source who was to provide evidence of financial improprieties by local firms. Roreign and Russian press freedom groups had documented Yudina’s troubles with Kalmyk authorities as a journalist and as local leader of the liberal opposition Yabloko party. The public outcry over her death caused the federal prosecutor to take over the case, and three suspects were arrested.