Anatoly Gerashchenko: Russian aviation expert latest official to die under mysterious circumstances


The former rector of the Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI) has died, according to a statement from the organization, amid a recent spate of mysterious deaths among senior Russian officials and executives.

Anatoly Gerashchenko “died in an accident” on September 21 and had served as the institute’s rector from 2007 to 2015, according to the MAI website.

He spent 45 years of his life in the organization, rose through the ranks of the institute and was “doctor of technical sciences, professor [and] Adviser to the Rector of MAI,” he added.

The institute’s website added that a commission is now formed to investigate the incident, which will include representatives from the Ministry of Education and Science, the National Labor Inspectorate and the MAI.

Gerashchenko is at least the 10th influential Russian to have died by suicide or in unexplained accidents since late January, with at least six of them associated with Russia’s two biggest energy companies.

Four of these six companies were linked to Russian energy giant Gazprom or one of its subsidiaries, while the other two were associated with Lukoil, Russia’s largest private oil and gas company.

Earlier this year, the company took the unusual public position to speak out against Russia’s war in Ukraine, to appeal for sympathy for the victims and to end the conflict.

President of Lukoil Ravil Maganov died in early September after falling out of a Moscow hospital window, according to Russian state news agency TASS.

In mid-September, Russian businessman Ivan Pechorin, who is the general director of the Corporation for the Development of the Far East and Arctic, was found dead in Vladivostok, according to local media. Russian state. Pechorin drowned on September 10 near Cape Ignatyev in Vladivostok, regional media reported.