The daughter of an ultra-nationalist Russian ideologue who advocates Russia absorbing Ukraine was killed in a suspected car bomb attack outside Moscow on Saturday evening, Russian state investigators said on Sunday.
Darya Dugina, daughter of prominent ideologue Alexander Dugin, was killed after a suspected explosive device detonated on the Toyota Land Cruiser she was travelling in, investigators from the Moscow region said in a statement.
Russia’s TASS state news agency quoted Andrei Krasnov, someone who knew Dugina, as saying the vehicle belonged to her father and that he was probably the intended target.
Father and daughter had been attending a festival outside Moscow and Dugin had decided to switch cars at the last minute, Russian government newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta reported.
TV footage accompanying the statement showed investigators collecting debris and fragments from the spot where the explosion happened.
Investigators, who described Darya Dugina as a journalist and political expert, said they had opened a murder case and would be carrying out forensic examinations to try to determine exactly what had happened.
They said they were considering “all versions” when it came to working out who was responsible for the crime.
Alexander Dugin, Darya’s father, has long advocated the unification of Russian-speaking and other territories in a vast new Russian empire.
He wants that empire to include Ukraine where Russian forces are currently carrying out what Moscow calls a “special military operation” to demilitarise Ukraine.
The influence of Dugin, who is on a U.S. sanctions list, over Russian President Vladimir Putin has been a subject for speculation, with some Russia watchers asserting that his sway is significant and others calling it minimal.
Darya Dugina, who also went by the surname Platonova and was reported by Russian state media to be 30 years old, broadly supported her father’s ideas and appeared on state TV in her own right to offer support for Russia’s actions in Ukraine.
In a statement in March, the U.S. Treasury said Dugina, the chief editor of the United World International website, which has suggested Ukraine would “perish” if admitted to the NATO military alliance, had been put on a U.S. sanctions list.
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