Russian mourners bring flowers to a bridge near the Kremlin where opposition activist Boris Nemtsov was shot to death. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Russian mourners came to the bridge in Moscow where opposition activist Boris Nemtsov was killed on Friday (February 27), bringing flowers and candles to the site of his murder. Nemtsov, a former Russian deputy prime minister who was an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin, was shot dead metres away from the Kremlin in central Moscow late on Friday. He was shot four times in the back, the Russian Interior Ministry said. A police spokeswoman on the scene said he had been walking on a bridge over the Moskva River with a Ukrainian woman. Putin condemned the killing and took the investigation under presidential command, saying it could have been a contract killing and a "provocation" on the eve of a big opposition protest that Nemtsov had been due to lead in Moscow on Sunday (March 1). Police cars sealed off the bridge close to the red walls of the Kremlin and Red Square, and an ambulance was on the scene. A police spokesman said Nemtsov had been shot at from a passing white car that fled the scene. The woman was being interviewed by police. Mikhail Kasyanov, a fellow opposition leader, told reporters at the bridge: "That a leader of the opposition could be shot beside the walls of the Kremlin is beyond imagination. There can be only one version: that he was shot for telling the truth." Kasyanov, a former prime minister under Putin, called Nemtsov a "fighter for the truth". Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, told Russian news agencies that the president had expressed his condolences and ordered the security agencies to investigate. He said Putin had called it a "brutal murder".