Sergey Sokolov

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Vera (left) and Ilya Politkovsky attend a pre-trial court hearing in June. (Reuters/Maxim Shemetov)

The retrial of several suspects in the October 2006 murder of Anna Politkovskaya has started on the wrong foot, according to the family and former colleagues of the late journalist.

A security guard at the Christ the Saviour Cathedral, right, runs toward Pussy Riot supporters holding Cyrillic letters reading 'Blessed are the Merciful' in Moscow on Aug. 15. (AP/Novaya Gazeta, Yevgeny Feldman)

Record-high temperatures swept most of Europe this summer, but in Moscow the weather, much like the political climate, was chilly. I spent three months in the capital at the invitation of the Russian Union of Journalists, and witnessed how Vladimir Putin's third term in office kicked off with the passage of restrictive laws, harassment and prosecution of dissent, the jailing of an irreverent punk-rock band, and death threats by a top-ranking official against a prominent editor. 

Sergey Sokolov (AP/Novaya Gazeta)

Moscow, June 13, 2012--The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply disturbed by reported threats against Sergey Sokolov, deputy editor of the independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta, by Russia's top investigating official, Aleksandr Bastrykin.

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