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Media outlet founded by journalist Irina Slavina shuts down months after her death

The Nizhny Novgorod-based outlet Koza.Press, founded by independent journalist Irina Slavina, has shut down four months after her death. This was announced by Slavina’s daughter, Margarita Murakhtaeva, in a Facebook post on Wednesday, February 10. 

“I have made a decision as Irina Slavina’s daughter. It isn’t an easy decision, but, I believe it’s the only correct one. To let go of Koza [...] I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who supported Koza during these very difficult four months. [...] For me, this was a very important experience, which allowed me to see new horizons and understand that everything is just beginning.”

Koza.Press was an online outlet covering politics and corruption in the Nizhny Novgorod region. It was established by well-known local journalist Irina Slavina, who essentially ran it single-handedly as editor-in-chief. 

Slavina died by suicide on October 2 2020; she set fire to herself outside of the local police headquarters and died of her injuries on the scene. Moments before her self-immolation, she wrote on Facebook: “For my death, please blame the Russian Federation.” 

According to friends and colleagues, Slavina faced constant pressure from the authorities over the past few years; she was also fined on multiple occasions for speaking out about sensitive topics on Facebook, as well as for her participation in public demonstrations and for various Koza.Press publications.

Slavina’s relatives have been seeking the launch of a criminal case for incitement or inducement to suicide over her death, but the Russian authorities have refused to open an investigation three times already.

Margarita Murakhtaeva announced the family’s initial plans to continue Koza.Press’s work in mid-October 2020.

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