The daughter of a philosopher seen as the nationalist ideological inspiration of Russian President Vladimir Putin was killed when the car she was driving near Moscow exploded on Saturday night, according to Russian reports.
Darya Dugina, 30, reportedly died as the vehicle burst into flames and careened across the road, smashing into pieces.
Her father, Alexander Dugin, is believed to have been the intended target, as it was his car that she was driving, sources told the Tass news agency.
A friend told Tass that Dugin and his daughter were due to return from a music festival in the same car but the father decided to travel separately at the last minute.
Law enforcement confirmed to the news agency that a woman driving an SUV was killed when the vehicle exploded in the village of Bolshiye Vyazemy.
An unverified video purported to show Dugin at the side of the road watching the blazing vehicle as rescue services arrived.
рашист дугин приехал на место взрыва автомобиля, в котором находилась его дочь
Детали: как пишут российские паблики, дарья дугина возвращалась с семейного фестиваля «Традиция» в усадьбе захарово. дугин планировал ехать вместе с дочерью, но в последний момент сел в другую машину. pic.twitter.com/4wnJ2BmbTz
— DanaElena. ???????????????????????????????????????? (@danielapruna2) August 20, 2022
Dugin is a prominent ultranationalist commonly referred to as “Putin’s brain.” He is considered to have a strong influence on the Russian leader’s worldview and is a key figure behind the ideology adopted by many in the Kremlin, the BBC reported.
Dugina herself was a well-known journalist and had supported the invasion of Ukraine. Earlier this year she was sanctioned by the US and UK for contributing to online “disinformation” over the war.
Daughter of the prominent #Russia|n Nazi ideologist Alexander Dugin, Darya Platonova (Dugina) publicly described Ukrainians as “subhumans” and called for the Russian occupation of #Ukraine and extermination of Ukrainian identity. I am sorry if I am not sorry about her death. pic.twitter.com/QA2KRnmacy
— Alex Kokcharov (@AlexKokcharov) August 20, 2022
In a May interview with the Geopolitika News website she called the war a “clash of civilizations” and was proud that both she and her father had been sanctioned.
Denis Pushilin, head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic in the occupied Donbas region of Ukraine, blamed “terrorists” from Ukraine. Other pro-Kremlin telegram channels also pointed the finger at Ukraine as the culprit for the car-bombing, the New York Post reported.
Alexander Dugin was already sanctioned in 2015 for alleged involvement in the Russian annexation of Crimea.