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Russia hopes for thorough probe into journalist death in Iraq

MOSCOW, May 8 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Foreign Ministry said Tuesday it hopes the U.S.-led coalition force in Iraq and the country's authorities will thoroughly investigate the incident that resulted in a Russian journalist's death Sunday.

"We hope the Multinational Force command, and competent Iraqi authorities will conduct a thorough investigation into the incident leading to the Russian's death," ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said in a statement.

Expressing condolences to relatives and loved ones of the journalist, Kamynin said his ministry recommends that Russian nationals abstain from trips to Iraq until the situation there stabilizes.

Dmitry Chebotayev, who had worked for Russian Newsweek and Kommersant, and was in Iraq working as a press photographer for a U.S. photo agency, died May 6 when an American armored vehicle was blown up in the Diyala province. Six American servicemen died in the incident as well.

A report by the Committee to Protect Journalists said last week that Iraq remains the most dangerous assignment for journalists, with more than 32 killed there last year, and at least 100 dead since the start of hostilities in 2003.

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