On Monday (Aug 22), Russia's Federal Security Service accused Ukraine's secret services of killing Darya Dugina, the daughter of an ultra-nationalist, in a car bomb attack near Moscow that President Vladimir Putin described as "evil."
Dugina was killed on Saturday when a bomb blew up the Toyota Land Cruiser she was driving, according to Russian investigators. She is the daughter of Russian ideologist Alexander Dugin.
Ukraine denied being involved in the attack and labeled the Russian accusation as "propaganda" in an effort to defend itself against what it claims is an imperial-style war of conquest being waged by Russia.
Putin bestowed Dugina with the Order of Courage, a high state honor, on Monday after her passing "for courage and selflessness shown in the performance of professional duty", the Kremlin said.
Dugina, a frequent state television commentator, has expressed her strong support for Russia's actions in Ukraine, which Moscow refers to as a "special military operation." The 60-year-old Alexander Dugin has long supported using force to reunite Russian-speaking and other territories. In his first comment regarding the bombing, he claimed that Ukraine had brutally murdered Darya in front of his very eyes.
"Our hearts are not simply thirsting for revenge or retribution," Dugin wrote. "We only need our victory. My daughter has sacrificed her young life on the altar of victory. So please win!"
The attack, according to Russia's FSB security service, was carried out by a 1979-born Ukrainian lady who was identified and whose details and image emerged on Russian news websites.
They claimed she was a member of the Azov battalion, a section of the Ukrainian army that Russia has labeled as a terrorist organization, and they connected her to the country's intelligence agencies. The lady reportedly spent a month planning the attack after arriving in Russia in July, according to the FSB. After then, it claimed that she had escaped to Estonia.
Azov replied that the woman had never been a part of the squad and charged Russia with fabricating the story.
According to the TASS news agency, the woman was added to Russia's wanted list by law enforcement agencies, and Moscow is requesting her extradition.
In separate statements, Estonia's interior ministry, police, and border guard service claimed they could only exchange information on people entering and departing the country "only in cases prescribed by law", adding that the FSB allegation did not fit that description.
Putin praised Dugina as a hero and referred to her assassination as "evil and cruel," while Margarita Simonyan, editor-in-chief of the Kremlin-backed RT TV outlet, indicated agents might be able to find the lady.