Icelandic Student Sought in Shooting

An international arrest warrant has been issued for an Icelandic exchange student who accidentally shot and killed her host brother in the southern city of Astrakhan, the Investigative Committee said Friday.

It was unclear if the case might affect a request by Reykjavik for a multibillion-dollar loan from Moscow to bail out its struggling financial sector.

The 17-year-old female Icelander accidentally shot Pavel Kurinny, 20, in the head with a pellet gun on Oct. 10, and he subsequently died from the injury, the committee said in a statement.

Investigators have opened a manslaughter case against the girl, who has since fled the country, the committee said. If charged and convicted in Russia, she faces up to two years in prison.

On the day of the incident, the Icelander was with Kurinny and his younger sister in their apartment, investigators said.

The exchange student asked Kurinny to show her his pellet gun, and while examining the weapon, she accidentally pulled the trigger and fired a pellet into Kurinny's head, they said.

The girls called the police and an ambulance, but Kurinny never regained consciousness and died in the hospital four days later.

Authorities have not released the girl's name, but Astrakhan FM radio on Friday identified her by her first name, Halla.

A Prosecutor General's Office spokesman could not say whether Russia would seek to extradite the girl because the Investigative Committee had not yet handed the case over to prosecutors.

An Investigative Committee spokeswoman said the case files would "probably be sent to Iceland" and that the girl would likely stand trial there.

Under a mutual legal assistance treaty, should a request for the girl's extradition be rejected, Icelandic authorities will take over the case, the committee said. If charged, she will be tried under Icelandic law. The girl was in Astrakhan to study Russian at a local school, investigators said.

The Icelandic Embassy in Moscow said Friday that it was unaware of the case and could not comment. Repeated calls to Astrakhan prosecutors went unanswered.

Iceland has asked Russia for a loan of several billion euros after the country's financial sector, a mainstay of its economy, collapsed under the pressure of the global liquidity crisis. A first round of talks on the loan were held Wednesday. Further talks will resume soon, Iceland's prime minister, Geir Haarde, said Thursday.