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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Iranian's Death Seen As Racist

An Iranian teenager stabbed to death in southwest Moscow last week was the victim of a racist attack, police said.

Ahmad Riza Kharrani, 19, was stabbed in the heart and wrist at around 9 p.m. on Sept. 16 while walking on Ulitsa Kedrova, near the Akademicheskaya metro station. There were no witnesses, and he later bled to death in an ambulance on the way to hospital.

"There are specific signs that this was a crime committed on racist grounds," an unidentified police official said Friday, RIA-Novosti reported.

Kharrani was the son of an Iranian Embassy interpreter and a student at the Moscow Energy Institute. Police had initially suspected that the murder was racially motivated, as neither money nor a laptop computer were taken during the assault. "We have suspects, but so far no one has been detained," the police official said.

Iranian Foreign Ministry officials in Tehran summoned the Russian ambassador on the night of the killing to protest and called on Russian authorities to investigate the case, the IRNA news agency reported.

Sova, a nongovernmental organization that tracks racist and skinhead violence, said 351 racially motivated attacks and 39 murders happened in Russia in the first half of 2007.

"That's an underreported number by about 30 percent because it's so hard to check these facts that we regularly discard what we can't prove," said Galina Kozhevnikova, deputy head of Sova.