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Nemtsov’s Companion, Witness to Killing, Says She’s Barred From Leaving Russia

Anna Duritskaya, a Ukrainian model, said the Russian police were not allowing her to return to Ukraine, though they have not formally detained her.

MOSCOW — They met three years ago, by some accounts on a vacation to Turkey, and soon enough became a couple.

Though she was less than half his age, Anna Duritskaya, a Ukrainian model, was often with Boris Nemtsov, a beleaguered Russian opposition leader, including on Friday evening, when a gunman carried out the highest-profile political assassination in Russia during the tenure of President Vladimir V. Putin.

Anna Duritskaya, a Ukrainian model and the girlfriend of the Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, was a witness to his assassination. (Daria Buznikova/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images)

Ms. Duritskaya is now a primary witness to the shooting. In interviews with Russian news media on Monday, Ms. Duritskaya said the Russian police were not allowing her to return to Ukraine, though they had not formally detained her.

Her uncertain status has drawn objections from Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry and her Russian lawyer, who has said the action has no legal basis under Russian law. The development comes in a case that Western officials, including Secretary of State John Kerry, have implored Russia to solve swiftly and openly. The Kremlin had no official comment on Monday.

On Monday, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry issued a statement calling on the Russian authorities to release Ms. Duritskaya and allow the return “of this citizen of Ukraine to her homeland.”

Darya Mostovaya contributed reporting.

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Source: The New York Times (1551 Articles)
Written by Andrew E. Kramer