Those who ordered the murder of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov could have been influenced by foreign forces, top spokesman for the Russian Investigative Committee Vladimir Markin said in a statement Tuesday.
According to Markin, the calls of Western representatives to bring those responsible for Nemtsov's murder to court can be seen as hinting at Russia's inability to find “the true masterminds, who pulled strings from abroad and influenced those who ordered the killing.”
Foreign forces behind the murder were seeking to “cast a gloom over the anniversary of the reunification of the Crimea with Russia,” Markin said in a statement published on the Investigative Committee's official website.
Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine in March 2014. The move was condemned by many world leaders.
Markin's statement comes two days after the one-year anniversary of opposition leader and former prime minister Boris Nemtsov's death. He was fatally shot in the back while walking across the Bolshoi Moskvoretsky Bridge in the late evening of Feb. 27, 2015.
Earlier this year, the Investigative Committee declared that Nemtsov’s murder had been solved.
Five Chechen men have been arrested over the killing, including alleged murderer Zaur Dadayev. Ruslan Mukhudinov — another Chechen national who has been accused by the investigation of masterminding and ordering the killing — has been declared internationally wanted.