World

Moscow journalist in intensive care after stabbing attack

​A well-known Russian radio journalist who was stabbed in the throat by an attacker is transferred to an intensive care unit after surgery.

'I will be fine,' well-known radio host Tatyana Felgenhauer says after surgery

Popular radio host Tatyana Felgenhauer was put into a medically induced coma after Monday's attack. (Vitaly Ruvinsky/Ekho Moskvyvia/Associated Press)

​A well-known Russian radio journalist who was stabbed in the throat by an attacker has undergone an operation and been transferred to an intensive care unit, the Ekho Moskvy radio station said Tuesday.

Tatyana Felgenhauer, a top host and deputy editor in chief at Ekho Moskvy, Russia's only independent news radio station, scribbled a letter to her colleagues from her hospital bed to thank them for their support.

"I will be fine," she wrote. "I had a good sleep for the first time in my 16 years on the radio."

Felgenhauer spent hours in a medically induced coma following Monday's attack at the station's studios in central Moscow — the latest in a slew of assaults on journalists and opposition figures. Most have remained unsolved.

CCTV footage released by the station on Tuesday showed the attacker spraying gas into the face of a security guard in the reception area, ducking under the turnstile and running.

'Telepathic contact'

The investigative committee has identified the suspect as 48-year-old Boris Grits, who holds Russian and Israeli citizenship. After being apprehended, he told investigators he had been in "telepathic contact with Felgenhauer" for five years. The man was expected to appear in court later Tuesday.

Grits was taken into custody immediately after the attack. A Moscow court ordered his formal arrest Tuesday and said he should be kept in custody for two months pending an investigation.

State-owned media have long targeted Ekho Moskvy (Echo of Moscow) along with other rare independent media outlets for its critical reporting.

The state television channel Rossiya 24 put out a report two weeks ago that claimed that the station paid for "destabilizing society" ahead of Russia's presidential election in March.

Suspect Boris Grits, 48, sits in a cage in a Moscow court room on Tuesday. Police say Grits claimed he had been in 'telepathic contact' with Felgenhauer for five years prior to Monday's attack. (Alexander Zemlianichenko/Associated Press)

Another popular Ekho Moskvy host, Yulia Latynina, fled Russia in September following a suspected arson attack on her car.

Latynina wrote in Tuesday's edition of Novaya Gazeta that despite the latest assailant's apparent mental troubles the attack seems to be a logical follow-up to increasingly militant rhetoric by some Russian officials who have openly described media like Ekho Mosvky as enemies.

"Grits' mental disorder curiously matches the party line," Latynina said. "The attack on Felgenhauer falls neatly into the line of numerous attacks on independent journalists and opposition politicians that were met with impunity." 

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