Today, the United States remembers human rights defender and journalist Natalya Estemirova and Forbes journalist and editor, Paul Klebnikov. On July 15, 2009, Ms. Estemirova was abducted and killed in the North Caucasus region of Russia, likely in retaliation for her writing and activism on human rights abuses. Mr. Klebnikov was murdered on July 9, 2004, which many believe was in retaliation for his writing on official corruption and graft. Neither the killers nor those who ordered these crimes have ever been brought to justice.
We honor the memories of Ms. Estimirova and Mr. Klebnikov by continuing to press for justice and accountability for ongoing abuses in the North Caucasus and for protection for those who blow the whistle on corruption. The United States will continue to support the efforts of brave journalists and human rights defenders in Russia, and around the world, exposing corruption and human rights abuses.