Popular Bulgarian Journalist Victoria Marinova Raped And Beaten To Death

Bulgarian TV host Victoria Marinova raped and killed

Worldwide bodies charged with the safety of journalists around the world have condemned the murder of Marinova as The Committee to Protect Journalists called on Bulgarian authorities to conduct a "rigorous, thorough investigation" into the killing.

The Bulgarian suspect was picked up late Tuesday at the request of Bulgarian authorities, Interior Minister Mladen Marinov told a news conference.

Bulgaria's prosecutor general, Sotir Tsatsarov, confirmed the arrest of Severin Krassimirov, a 21-year-old Bulgarian citizen, but gave no further details of his location.

Marinova, a 30-year-old Bulgarian TV journalist, was found dead in a park in the north Bulgarian city of Ruse on Saturday.

On her last TV show, on September 30, Marinova introduced two journalists who were investigating suspected corruption involving European Union funds and said her own show, "Detector", on local television station NTV, would carry out similar investigations.

Marinova is at least the third journalist killed in an European Union country this year, after investigative journalists Jan Kuciak of Slovakia and Daphne Caruana Galizia of Malta also turned up dead.

The commission vice president, Frans Timmermans, said he was "shocked by the horrendous murder of Victoria [sic] Marinova".

Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, who investigated local government corruption, was killed in October 2017 by a bomb that destroyed her auto.

Yordanov said that "to get to the truth we are calling for an independent investigation. we want independent European investigators to get involved because we believe the Bulgarian authorities are part of this country's criminal network".

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The journalist's murder shocked her country and prompted claims she may have been targeted as "a warning" because of her work.

"We have collected a lot of evidence which for the time being suggests that the person is guilty". One of them, Kristina Petkov said Bulgarians had "zero" trust in authorities.

Journalist Tsvetomir Semov reported from Sofia and CNN's Claudia Otto from Berlin.

Prime Minister Boyko Borisov expressed hope that the investigation would succeed because of the "work that has been done". That episode featured two journalists - Dimitar Stoyanov from the Bivol.bg website and Attila Biro from the Romanian Rise Project - and their investigation into alleged fraud between Romanian politicians and business people, according to the Guardian.

And the UN's cultural agency, UNESCO, similarly said that "attacks on journalists erode the fundamental human right to freedom of expression and its corollaries, press freedom and free access to information".

Through a United Nations spokesperson, Secretary-General António Guterres called on "all governments to strengthen press freedom and ensure there is accountability for crimes committed against journalists".

RSF called for other journalists at the station to have police protection while the investigation takes place.

Bulgaria is regarded as a laggard in the European Union in terms of press freedom, ranking 111th out of 180 countries, according to Reporters Without Borders (RSF).

A candlelight vigil in her memory will be held on Monday evening in both Ruse and the capital Sofia.

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