'Murdered' Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko appears on Ukrainian TV

'Murdered' Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko appears on Ukrainian TV

Arkady Babchenko, the Russian opposition journalist reportedly shot dead in the Ukrainian capital, has appeared alive and well at a news conference in Kiev.

The State Security Service, or SBU, said Russian Federation had sought to pay $40,000 to assassinate Arkady Babchenko, who moved to Kiev a year ago following threats in his homeland. His wife, who was in the bathroom at the time, found him bleeding on the floor and called police.

Babchenko, 41, one of Russia's best-known war reporters, spoke and wrote about leaving the country because of repeated threats that he and his family would be harmed.

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Mr Babchenko's wife had earlier said he'd been shot in the back as he left their apartment in the city.

Harlem Desir, the media freedom representative at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, said he was "horrified" by Babchenko's death.

Having been called unpatriotic over a piece past year on Russia's intervention in Syria, Babchenko complained of an atmosphere of hate toward his work.

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Russian Foreign Ministry and state-controlled media have begun pushing an alternate reality version of the gunning down in Kyiv of Arkady Babchenko, Russian journalist and outspoken critic of Russia's aggression against Ukraine and the regime of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Authorities said they suspected he was killed because of his work. In one particularly controversial article, he said he did not feel any sadness for the deaths of Russian army choir members in a December 2016 plane crash. Prominent Russians to have been murdered in Kiev include journalist Pavel Sheremet, who was killed in a auto bomb in 2016, and ex-Russian lawmaker Denis Voronenkov, who was shot dead in 2017.

Some of his articles and posts outraged many Russians.

Mr Babchenko left Russian Federation in February 2017, saying he was receiving threats and concerned he might be jailed.

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He moved to Kiev, where he worked for a Crimean television station and produced coverage critical of Russia's military actions in Ukraine.

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