KIEV, Ukraine, July 20 (UPI) — Pavel Sheremet, a Belarussian journalist working in the Ukraine, was killed in an explosion Wednesday morning in Kiev while driving a car belonging his girlfriend, who is the founding editor of the news outlet for which he worked.
The explosion occurred at about 7:45 a.m. local time. The car belonged to Olena Prytula, who was a founding editor of the Ukrainska Pravda online news outlet and Sheremet’s girlfriend. Some of Sheremet’s colleagues believe Prytula may have been the intended target.
Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yury Lutsenko in a statement said that Sheremet was killed due to a bomb explosion — calling the incident a “murder” and ruling out technical fault as the cause. Ukraine National Police Chief Khatia Dekanoidze traveled to the scene of the incident to investigate the case.
Sheremet, 44, had been working outside of Belarus for years. He worked as a television host and journalist in Russia before moving to Kiev about five years ago. Sheremet was driving to work to host his morning show on Radio Vesti when the car bomb exploded.
“The explosion was so strong that the parts [of the car] were lying near my kiosk,” a fruit kiosk vendor who witnessed the explosion told the Kiev Post. The explosion occurred near Kiev’s government quarter.