More than 20,000 people took to the streets of Moscow on Sunday to honor opposition politician Boris Nemtsov. He was shot and killed Friday. Nemtsov was supposed to lead an opposition march but his supporters cancelled it after his death and held a vigil instead. CCTV’s Anya Ardayeva reported this story from Moscow.
As tens of thousands of Russians gather to remember murdered Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov, there was a sense of shock about his death, just steps away from the Kremlin.
Thousands march in opposition leader Boris Nemtsov\'s memoryMore than 20,000 people took to the streets of Moscow on Sunday to honor opposition politician Boris Nemtsov. He was shot and killed Friday. Nemtsov was supposed to lead an opposition march but his supporters cancelled it after his death and held a vigil instead. CCTV's Anya Ardayeva reported this story from Moscow.
Showing their quiet support for the politician and former governor, ‘Muscovites’ brought piles of flowers to the scene: lighting candles and leaving photographs, posters and poems with some saying “We are all Nemtsov” and “Propaganda Kills.”
Nemtsov had hoped to reignite the opposition with a march, for up to 50-thousand people, in the outskirts of the city on Sunday.
Boris Nemtsov had been planning a rare opposition rally, against the war in Ukraine and the government’s economic policies. Instead his friends and supporters have come out to mourn his death in central Moscow.
Nemtsov’s murder has prompted divided opinions. Some believe the struggling opposition may have killed one of their own. Many others though, believe that Nemtsov was killed for his political views and blame the authorities for igniting hatred and nationalism in society.
“I’m confident that changes are unavoidable now and they will come. And the tragic death of Boris will undoubtedly change the minds of many people who will stop looking at what’s happening with half-shut eyes like ‘I don’t care’ and ‘this all won’t matter for me,’ but they will start thinking about it differently,” Former Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasayanov said.
President Putin condemned Nemtsov’s murder, calling it “vile and cynical.” He promised to find the killers. Russia’s Interior Ministry promised a three-million-ruble or about $50,000 reward for information related to the crime.
Police say about 25,000 people took part in Sunday’s march. Organizers put the numbers at more than 50,000- making it the biggest rally since 2013 when tens of thousands came to the streets to protest against Putin’s third term in office.
William Courtney discusses the killing of Boris Nemtsov
CCTV America’s Susan Roberts interviewed former US Ambassador to Kazakhstan and Georgia William Courtney. He is Senior Fellow at Washington think tank RAND Corporation. He discussed the untimely death of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov.