A Russian war journalist who vowed to reveal new details of a ‘gigantic corruption’ in the Putin-invaded Ukrainian city Mariupol has been found dead.

Alexander Rybin’s body was discovered by a roadside near Shakhty, in Russia’s Rostov region – making him the latest in a string of mysterious media-linked deaths amidst Putin’s war against Ukraine.

The 39-year-old died after a visit to occupied Mariupol, where he criticised the Putin regime in an on-air report for its slowness in rebuilding the war-blitzed city. Putin on the other hand sees Mariupol as a holiday location for Russians on the Azov Sea.

The reporter- who had backed the Kremlin leader’s annexation of the Donbas – revealed an influx of immigrants to undertake the reconstruction and huge money pumped in from Russia, but slammed the “gigantic corruption”, and vowed to reveal more details in a live broadcast on leftist online outlet Rabkor after returning to Moscow. He never made it back to the capital.

The reporter was due to reveal more details about a ‘gigantic corruption’ but died before he could
Social media/east2west news)

According to the Russian state media, Rybin’s autopsy revealed his cause of death to be “cardiomyopathy”. His bank cards and valuables had not been removed. The reporter had previously fought in invaded Luhansk for pro-Putin forces in 2014-15, but became disillusioned with the so-called “Russian Spring”.‌

He had travelled widely reporting for a variety of Russian media including pro-Putin outlets. He had lived and worked in the Middle East, the US, Turkey, Ethiopia, Iran, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and other countries.

On 30 December he told viewers from Mariupol: “There is gigantic money here, there are gigantic opportunities for corruption. My personal impression – I’m not accusing anybody of anything…is that there is a gigantic corruption going on in Mariupol, which the Russian army occupied with heavy fighting in Spring 2022. The year 2023, in my opinion, is in no way easier for the residents of Mariupol than what was happening in 2022, unfortunately.” He vowed to give more details later.

Rybin died of ‘cardiomyopathy’ according to Russian state media
Rabkor/east2west news)

On Sunday, it was reported that the chief editor of Russian state TV company Kuban, operating in Krasnodar region close to the war zone, was discovered in her bedroom. She and her ex-husband – whose body was found at the scene – had died from “poisoning”, said law enforcement.

Last month Ilya Kyva, 46, once a party leader in the Kyiv parliament, was found “covered in blood” in a suspected assassination near Moscow by Ukrainian secret services.‌ He had become a Putin puppet who appeared as an analyst on obedient state TV shows.

Last month, too, the 35-year-old deputy editor-in-chief of Putin’s favourite newspaper was found dead in Moscow. ‌Anna Tsareva’s body was discovered at her home in the Russian capital, with an investigation underway. Police opened an investigation into the death of the deputy editor of pro-Putin Komsomolskaya Pravda [KP], a high-flying Russian journalist.

‌In September 2022, her boss Vladimir Sungorkin, 68, editor-in-chief and director general of Komsomolskaya Pravda, died of a “heart attack” after showing signs of suffocation. His death has been seen as suspicious. He is often included among a list of dozens of untimely or mysterious deaths since the start of Putin’s war. Sungorkin fell unconscious on a tour of the Russian Far East minutes after suggesting his group “find a beautiful place somewhere… for lunch.”