Even in Russia, where attacks on journalists are tragically common, the story was macabre. The editor of Novaya Gazeta, an opposition newspaper, published a letter accusing Alexander Bastrykin, head of the investigative committee (equivalent to America’s FBI), of meeting his deputy editor, Sergei Sokolov, in a forest and threatening to kill him and then investigate the murder. Mr Sokolov promptly fled the country.
As an investor, I’ve seen the best and worst of the Euro 2012 host, but I won’t give up on it. The European Championship is usually a chance to show the world your best side and bask in sympathetic international media attention. Not so Ukraine. The pre-publicity has already fixed it in the public mind as a place of corrupt politicians, absurd prices, violent policemen and racist football gangs.
"I think none of the institutions in this country works," says businessman Alexander Lebedev. "I think the judges are not the judges, the police are not the police, the central bank inspectors are not the central bank inspectors, and finally, the bureaucrats are not the bureaucrats. They're after quick profit, through corruption."


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