A Tajik citizen and an ethnic Armenian were brutally stabbed to death in separate attacks that appear racially motivated, authorities said Wednesday. Five suspects have been detained in connection with the stabbings, one of which was recorded by a video surveillance camera. Khairullo Sadykov, 26, a street sweeper from Tajikistan, was stabbed 35 times on Monday evening outside an apartment building on Ulitsa Metallurgov, near the Perovo metro station in eastern Moscow, said Sergei Vasilovsky, chief investigator at the Eastern Administrative District prosecutor’s office. He died on the spot. Prosecutors have opened a murder investigation. If charged and convicted, the two suspects face up to life in prison. In the other attack, Armenian businessman Karen Abramyan, 46, was stabbed 20 times by three assailants at around 10 p.m. Monday in southwest Moscow, police said. Abramyan was taken to a hospital, where he died of his wounds. A law enforcement source told Interfax that three young men had been detained. The source said the trio had shaved heads and were wearing army-style boots. “After he was taken to the hospital, the victim said he was attacked because of his ethnicity, saying the young men were shouting racial epithets,” the source was quoted as saying. The source said the detainees had admitted to stabbing the businessman.
A police spokesman declined to comment on the detentions. Vasilovsky did not have information about arrests in connection with the death. But a law enforcement source told Komsomolskaya Pravda that two teenagers resembling skinheads had been detained thanks to video footage from a surveillance camera installed near a building entryway. The footage showed two young men of Slavic appearance with shaven heads stabbing Sadykov, and both were wearing “high, laced-up, army-style boots,” the source said, Komsomolskaya Pravda reported Wednesday. The report identified the suspects as Pavel Skachayevsky, a 17-year-old student at the Russian State Physical Education University, and Artur Ryno, a 17-year-old art student. The clothes they were wearing when detained were covered in blood, and they closely resembled the attackers on the surveillance video, the report said.