Suspects confess to killing journalist

MOSCOW (AP) — Two former aides to a high-profile politician in the Russian republic of Kalmykia have confessed to killing an opposition journalist, a news agency reported Tuesday.
Larisa Yudina, editor of Soviet Kalmykia Today, was found dead June 8 in the republic’s capital, Elista. Her attackers had stabbed her repeatedly and fractured her skull.
Police arrested Sergei Vaskin, a former aide to Kalmyk President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, and Tyurbya Boskhomdzhiyev, his envoy to a nearby region. Both have admitted killing Yudina, the Interfax news agency reported, citing a federal prosecutor.
Ilyumzhinov announced Sunday he would run for the Russian presidency in 2000.
Yudina, who was also regional co-chairwoman of the Yabloko liberal opposition party, frequently criticized Ilyumzhinov, and recently accused him of extorting money from local business people under the guise of voluntary donations.
Liberal Russian media have accused Ilyumzhinov of running the impoverished region like a medieval baron, flaunting his fleet of luxury imported cars and other wealth while crushing dissent and ignoring the republic’s social troubles.