As ceremonies and marches are held in Moscow and across Russia to mark three years today from the assassination of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, on 27 February 2015, the local government for the city of Washington, D.C., is organising an official ceremony renaming the block of Wisconsin Avenue as Boris Nemtsov Plaza.
Vladimir Kara-Murza Jr., the chairman of the Boris Nemtsov Foundation For Freedom announced that that the ceremony is scheduled for February 27.
Russia has protested the renaming of the plaza in front of its embassy.
In Moscow, opposition politician Ilya Yashin announced that a ceremony will be held at Moscow’s Sakharov Center, where an exhibition will show photos of Nemtsov taken during different periods of his life.
Yashin said that participants will be able to watch the documentary My Friend, Boris Nemtsov, and listen to a recorded statement by Nemtsov’s daughter Zhanna Nemtsova, who currently resides in Germany.
A gathering started already this morning on the Moscow bridge overlooking the Kremlin where Nemtsov was gunned down on February 27, 2015.
Over the weekend, demonstrators gathered in Russian cities to march in his memory, chanting “Russia will be free” and touting signs with slogans such as “Putin — where’s the mastermind?”
In July, a Moscow court found five men from Russia’s North Caucasus region of Chechnya guilty of the murder and sentenced them to lengthy prison terms.
But relatives and associates charge that his assassination was ordered at a higher level. They say justice will not be served until the person or people who ordered the killing are identified and prosecuted.
In a February 26 statement commemorating the anniversary of Nemtsov’s killing, the U.S. State Department called on Russia to “uphold its obligations to promote and protect universal human rights, including freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, and freedom of association.”
Spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Russia should “ensure that all involved in [Nemtsov’s killing], including those who organized or ordered it, are brought to justice.”
Moscow authorities on February 22 gave the OK for a plaque to be placed on Nemtsov’s apartment building.