On Tuesday, March,1, members of Ukrainian security service arrested two persons, named in the journalist George Gongadze murder, another one confessed his guilt in law machinery. One of them is general, and two are colonels.

Colonels of Ministry of Internal Affairs Protash and Gudzenko were among prisoners blamed for murder complicity of George Gongadze.

Informed resources disproved the data that general Astion, ex-leader of Kiev Struggle organized crime administration, appeared arrested.

One of the known Ukrainian journalists engaged in criminal investigations Oleg Eltsov reported that the head of the disappeared journalist George Gongadze was found in Dnepr bay.

Security service of Ukraine refuted this information. According to the press secretary of SSU head Marina Ostapenko, this information did not represent the facts.

The newspaper "Today" reported that, according to data from MIA, probably, George was killed in the car (which, indeed, was found and put in the garage of general Prosecution). Then the body was buried, but not in Tarashch. Moreover, they tried to burn it, poured by petrol, but the body did not burn. In opinion of newspaper, "excess of performer" happened there. There was no intention to kill; George was shot in the head accidentally. As the bullet remained in the head (and it was a table pistol), they had to dismember body...

But General Prosecutor Piskun declared: "George Gongadze was killed by asphyxiation. Killers are Kievers. The killers were the operative police officials on that moment. Two criminals of four are now detained, one of suspected gave a written undertaking not to leave the place, another –General Pukach- the general of police and direct commander of Criminal search service, who personally finished almost dead George Gongadze - is in search".

We remind that the leader of the internet publishing «Ukraynska Pravda» George Gongadze disappeared on September, 16, 2000 in Kiev. At the beginning of November of the same year the beheaded dead body which examination acknowledged as the body of Gongadze was found in the Tarashchansky district of the Kiev region.

Vadim Karasev, political scientist, director of Institute of global strategies

New power is interested in that Gongadze’s murder gets judicial permission, judicial verdict and political estimation. About investigation of this case Yushchenko talked during his first European tour to PMs of Europe Council Assembly. 

Gongadze’s case completes protracted crisis cycle of Ukrainian development. It started actually with disappearance of Gongadze, proceeded by action "Ukraine without Kuchma" and finished by "orange revolution". Gongadze’s case can become not only a mini Nuernberg process and a huge fact of political culture change, but also a sentence to the previous political epoch.

Another moment to be paid attention to is that Gongadze’s case can adversely affect big part of previous elite which played a key role in Yushchenko support. Paradox of situation is in that direct opponents of Victor Yushchenko and possible strict opposition, foremost in the person of Victor Yanukovich, are not connected with Gongadze’s case, as they were out of power during its hot phase. But the row of political allies and partners can appear in the center of this process. Such paradoxical moments will be taken into account by new power and political association during the trial.

The problem of customers is a very difficult thing. A great deal will depend on qualification of investigators. Concerning possible accusation in the previous president Leonid Kuchma’s address, I want to say that there are a lot of doubts and suspicions. Gongadze’s disappearance caused crisis state of all political institutes and Kuchma. All Kuchma’s projects were frozen and neutralized. So the customers of murder can be among that part of political elite, which played against Leonid Kuchma.

Victor Shishkin, expert of the Temporal investigating commission of VRU charged with the investigation of Gongadze's murder

Piskun, being the General Prosecutor under Leonid Kuchma regime, declared that direct performers of murder were dead. Piskun referred to the facts of dead bodies and detention of "killers of killers". But now the investigation group declares that performers of Gongadze’s murder are detained and testified…

No further comment…

Valery Ivasuk, expert of the Temporal investigating commission of VRU charged with the investigation of Gongadze's murder

I have grounds to consider results of investigation illegal.

Gongadze murder investigation turned up at least two bodies, both of which, at one or another point in time, were identified as George Gongadze.

Five examinations were conducted on accordance of DNA of a dead body found in Tarashchansky district of Kievskaya region with DNA of Gongadze. Examinations had different results, however almost all of them confirmed that a dead body was not the body of George Gongadze. Investigation had  Gongadze’s blood sample from the very beginning and it was enough just one expertise for body identification.

Victor Nebojenko, political scientist

It is very simple to explane why investigation of this case speeded up. New power came and enormous deeply corrupted, bureaucratic system of courts and Office of Public Prosecutor naturally tries to save itself and instinct of self-preservation compels them to take into account the requirements of new power.

The president stimulated law enforcement authorities and cut off the way back. Now nobody of them will be able to postpone this case.

Beyond all doubt, the president participation in murder detecting is unique political experiment and experience which a single country of CIS did not know before. It means that he attaches huge political importance to this case.

There must be such chain: performers - organizers. I am not sure that customers will be found, because, I think, the question about customers will regularly change depending on that, which political force will come to power. Customers are the question of court and if this court is not quick, the last names will change from time to time depending on a political situation.

Igor Shkira, PM

After Yushchenko’s coming to power investigation of Gongadze’s case speeded up, probably, because former power was not interested in investigation of this crime and punishment of concrete culprits. I hope that information that the performers of murder are found is true, not declarative. Performers and customers must be punished, but I not am sure that veritable customers of this crime will be found and named.

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