Russian activist blames officials for threats

Associated Press Published: October 4, 2012

And last December, Khadzhimurad Kamalov, the founder of a newspaper critical of authorities in Dagestan that reported extensively on police abuses was gunned down outside his office.

Lokshina is one of the leading experts on the North Caucasus, helping expose human rights abuses. Vowing to continue her work undeterred, she blamed the threats on the atmosphere created by new Kremlin restrictions on non-government organizations' activities, which she described as "the worst in 20 years."

Since Vladimir Putin's inauguration for a third presidential term in May, the Kremlin-controlled parliament has passed a series of repressive laws, including the one that required the NGOs receiving funding from abroad to register as "foreign agents." Putin has frequently accused nonprofits of acting as proxies for the U.S. to meddle in Russian domestic affairs.