Denis Vorenenkov was a member of the Russian parliamentary body known as the Duma. Recently he and his wife had fled Russia for Ukraine after which he became highly critical of Russia and Vladimir Putin. Today he was shot in the head outside a hotel in Kiev.
A former Russian parliamentarian named Denis Voronenkov, who fled Russia last October and has criticized President Vladimir Putin’s government, was killed in Kiev on Thursday, in an apparent assassination that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is reportedly calling “state terrorism.”
Voronenkov, 45, had just left the Premier Palace hotel when he was shot twice in the head on a sidewalk along a busy street in Ukraine’s capital, according to the Kyiv Post. Citing police, the newspaper adds that both Voronenkov’s bodyguard and the attacker were wounded and in the hospital.
The killing has the “handwriting” of the Russian special services, Poroshenko said in a statement Thursday. According to a translation by Reuters, he said Voronenkov’s murder was “an act of state terrorism on the part of Russia, which he was forced to leave for political reasons.”
According to Radio Free Europe, Varonenkov recently described the situation in Russia like this:
Russia, Voronenkov chimes in, “has gone crazy. People are behaving in a pseudo-patriotic frenzy.”
He adds, quoting Maksakova on Russia’s elite: “The void left by the lack of professionalism has been replaced by loyalty to power.”
That sounds a little too familiar.
Snap from my Georgian dinner in Kyiv with new Ukrainian citizen/former Russian MP Denis Voronenkov and wife Maria Maksakova. pic.twitter.com/YhoNSnA0no
— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) February 15, 2017
Varonenkov was also considered a witness in the case against former Ukraine president Yanukovych.
He was also considered a witness in Ukraine’s treason case against its former pro-Moscow president, Viktor Yanukovych, who was ousted in early 2014 amid mass protests calling for closer ties with the European Union. Yanukovych has been accused of ordering the use of violence to suppress the protests.
Dissident Russians assassinated in the streets of Europe. It seems like something from a Cold War era potboiler.