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Russian Journalist Who Survived 2008 Beating Chokes to Death

Journalist Mikhail Beketov
A file photo shows Mikhail Beketov, center, editor of the Khimkinskaya Pravda, weekly published in the district of Khimki outside Moscow, taking part in an opposition rally in central Moscow on November 21, 2010. Photographer: Alexey Sazonov/AFP via Getty Images

Mikhail Beketov, editor of a newspaper in the Moscow suburb of Khimki who survived a near-fatal beating in 2008, died today at a hospital after choking on food. He was 55.

Beketov was in Khimki’s hospital No. 119 for a planned health exam when he choked on a piece of food during lunch and his heart stopped, his lawyer Stalina Gurevich said by phone.

“He started choking, his heart stopped and attempts to resuscitate him weren’t successful,” Gurevich said.

Beketov had a leg amputated and lost his ability to speak as a result of the assault, which also left him confined to a wheelchair. The perpetrators haven’t been found. The 2004 murder of Paul Klebnikov, the U.S. editor of Forbes Inc.’s Russian edition, and the 2006 killing of opposition journalist Anna Politkovskaya are among recent murders of journalists in Russia that remain unsolved.

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