MOSCOW (AP) — Hundreds of people lined up Tuesday to pay their respects to the daughter of a leading right-wing Russian political thinker, who died in a car bombing that Moscow blamed on Ukrainian intelligence.
Darya Dugina, a 29-year-old commentator for a Russian nationalist TV channel, died when a remote-controlled explosive device placed in her SUV detonated on Saturday night as she was driving on the outskirts of Moscow, tearing up the vehicle and killing her . at the scene, authorities said.
Her father was widely seen as the intended target. Alexander Dugin is a philosopher, writer and political theorist who strongly supports Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to send troops to Ukraine. Russian media quoted witnesses as saying the SUV belonged to Dugin and that he decided at the last minute to travel in another vehicle.
Speaking at a farewell ceremony at Ostankino TV Centre, Dugin said his daughter “died for the people, died for Russia”.
“The enormous price we have to pay can only be justified by the highest achievement, our victory,” Dugin said, his voice cracking. “She lived for victory and she died for victory. Our Russian victory, our truth, our Orthodox faith, our state.
Putin sent a letter of condolence to Dugin and his wife on Monday, denouncing the “cruel and treacherous” murder and saying that Dugina “honestly served the people and the fatherland, proving what it means to be a patriot of Russia. with his deeds. He posthumously awarded Dugina the Order of Courage, one of Russia’s highest medals.
Russia’s Federal Security Service, or FSB, the KGB’s main successor, said Dugina’s murder was “planned and carried out by Ukrainian special services”.
Ukraine has denied any involvement in the attack.
Oleksiy Danilov, the secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, reiterated the denial on Monday night, saying “our special services have nothing to do with it.”
The FSB accused a Ukrainian citizen, Natalya Vovk, of carrying out the murder after she arrived in Russia in July with her 12-year-old daughter and rented an apartment in the building where Dugina lived in order to follow her. He said Vovk and his daughter were at a nationalist festival that Dugin and his daughter attended just before the murder.
The agency said Vovk drove to Estonia after the murder, using a different license plate for his vehicle.
Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu rejected the Russian request, saying in televised remarks that “we see this as an example of provocation in a very long series of provocations by the Russian Federation, and we do not have nothing more to say about it at this time”.
The car bombing, unusual for Moscow since the gang wars of the turbulent 1990s, sparked calls from Russian nationalists to respond by stepping up strikes against Ukraine.
Dugin, dubbed “Putin’s brain” and “Putin’s Rasputin” by some in the West, has been a prominent proponent of the concept of the “Russian world”, a spiritual and political ideology that emphasizes traditional values, restoration of Russia’s global influence and the unity of all ethnic Russians throughout the world.
Dugin helped popularize the concept of “Novorossiya” or “New Russia” which Russia has used to justify the 2014 annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula and its support for separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine. He urged the Kremlin to step up its operations in Ukraine.
Dugin also promoted authoritarian leadership in Russia and spoke dismissively of liberal Western values. It was slapped by American and European sanctions.
His daughter expressed similar views and had appeared as a commentator on the Tsargrad TV channel, where Dugin had served as editor.
Dugina herself was sanctioned by the United States in March for her work as editor of United World International, a website Washington has described as a source of misinformation.