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The attack on Tatyana Felgenhauer Updates on what we know, so far

Source: Meduza
Anatoly Strunin / TASS

On Monday, October 23, a man forced his way into the Ekho Moskvy radio station and stabbed deputy chief editor Tatyana Felgenhauer in the neck. She was rushed to the hospital, and her condition is reportedly stable, according to the station’s chief editor, Alexey Venediktov. Security guards detained the assailant and handed him over to police.

Read Meduza's editorial on this attack

An eyewitness account, moments after the attack

In comments on Facebook, an eyewitness describes the first moments after Felgenhauer was stabbed:

“It was terrible. [...] I saw a bloodied Tatyana on the first floor (I didn’t recognize her). I just saw a young woman clutching her neck, with blood streaming down her arm. I quickly called the paramedics, and the security guards found a towel somewhere. First I wanted to use my scarf to put pressure on the wound, and then I wrapped her neck with the towel. Tatyana almost lost consciousness. She couldn’t speak. The paramedics, by the way, arrived almost instantly.”

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Felgenhauer's surgery is almost over

Doctors reported at nearly 4 p.m., Moscow time, that Felgenhauer's was almost complete. Physicians say they won't have a long-term prognosis for her until Tuesday morning, however.

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The Journalists' Trade Union says state television is partly to blame

The Journalists’ Trade Union has said in a statement that part of the blame for the attack on Felgenhauer falls on Rossiya-24:

“The television network Rossiya-24 has repeatedly aired segments accusing Ekho Moskvy journalists, and personally Tatyana Felgenhauer, of working “for the U.S. State Department” and cooperating with certain Western NGOs, criticizing the government, and even supposedly participating in Alexey Navalny’s protests. The segments aired state that the radio station Ekho Moskvy is engaged in anti-government activities, and should be registered as a foreign agent. The charges were made while the network broadcast photos of Tatyana and her colleagues Alexander Plushev and Maxim Kurnikov. We believe that these broadcasts incite hatred towards our colleagues and could have provoked the attack on Tatyana by an unbalanced person.”

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The attacker appears to be out of his mind

Blogger Ilya Varlamov has obtained video footage of the attacker's interrogation by the police. The man claims Felgenhauer “sexually pursued” him, and says he's been in “telepathic contact” with her for the past five years.

“She was brought to our institute... Her condition, it can be said, is critical,” Sergey Petrikov, director of the Sklifosovsky medical center, told the news agency Interfax.

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What we know at 3 p.m., Moscow time

  1. Doctors are currently operating on Felgenhauer. Her medical condition is unknown.
  2. The attacker was detained without identification, but his name could be Boris Grits, according to unverified rumors. A man with this name writes a blog where he wrote about hating Felgenhauer and threatened to come to Moscow and confront her.
  3. Investigators are treating the incident as an attempted murder.
  4. The Presidential Human Rights Council has taken control over the investigation.
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The attacker ran a hate blog against Felgenhauer

The attacker is rumored to be this man from Facebook, identified online as Boris Grits. In a Wordpress blog authored by someone with the same name, Grits wrote about how he hates Felgenhauer, vowing to coming to Moscow to confront her.

“I appeal to her [Felgenhauer's] colleagues at Ekho Moskvy with a request to rein in their colleague's behavior. And I appeal to her foster father, Pavel Felgenhauer: I hope you have some level of authority over your own daughter, and can get through to her. In a few weeks, I'm coming to Moscow, and if this doesn't stop the consequences might be very unpleasant,” Grits wrote on Wordpress on September 14, 2017.

According to the tabloid Telegram channel Mash, paramedics tended to another Ekho Moskvy staff member wounded by the attacker. He reportedly sustained a wound to his hand.

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