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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Tolyatti Arrest

MOSCOW (MT) -- Police in Tolyatti said they have caught the killer of Alexei Sidorov, the editor of the Tolyatti Review, Kommersant reported Tuesday. The Tolyatti Review is known for its investigations into organized crime in the hometown of Russia's auto industry.

Yevgeny Maininger, 29, a welder at the Kuibyshevazot factory, was charged with the murder of the journalist in what police said was a drunken brawl. However, investigators do not have any direct evidence against Maininger except his confession, Kommersant reported.

Police said the drunken factory worker killed Sidorov late on Oct. 9 with a sharpened object, which he later threw away in nearby woods. Maininger was detained three days later after arguing with police, but his relatives said they did not believe he was guilty. "There are serious time discrepancies," the paper quoted Maininger's sister Yelena as saying.

Envoy Recalled

MOSCOW (MT) -- The Swiss ambassador to Moscow, Walter Fetscherin, has been recalled by the Swiss Foreign Ministry amid rumors in the Swiss press of scandal and a tight-lipped statement by Swiss officials, Swiss Radio International reported. Fetscherin will leave Russia at the end of October.

Swiss Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernhard Marfurt said Fetscherin was recalled early "on security grounds, to protect the ambassador and Switzerland," according to Swiss Radio International. Swiss media speculated the ambassador might have failed to represent Swiss interests adequately, or been involved in blackmail or other shady dealings.

Fetscherin declined to comment, but made it clear that the government's decision had taken him by surprise, the Swissinfo web site reported Monday.

Official Azeri Result

BAKU, Azerbaijan (AP) -- The Azeri Central Elections Commission said its final count from last week's presidential election shows Ilham Aliyev got 77 percent of the vote, against 14 percent for Isa Gambar, his nearest rival. The CEC said 673,371 ballots were invalid.

OSCE observers condemned the vote as failing to meet international norms, citing ballot-stuffing and falsified counting.