Published: 11:50 EDT, 30 September 2020 | Updated: 15:50 EDT, 1 October 2020
An American employee at the US Embassy in Kiev has died in hospital after she was found beaten unconscious with head injuries in a forest area near some railway tracks.
Ukrainian police confirmed Wednesday an unidentified woman who worked at the embassy was killed while jogging in a park close to the compound and that a search was under way for a male suspect.
The badly-beaten victim was discovered, wearing running gear and headphones, by a passer-by near the railway tracks by Kyiv’s Nyvky Park outside the city center in the Shevchenko district of the Ukrainian capital.
She had suffered a head injury in the attack and was rushed to hospital where she died of her injuries, authorities said.
A US Embassy employee in Kiev has died in hospital after she was found beaten unconscious with head injuries in a forest area near some railway tracks. Pictured the US Embassy
Artem Shevchenko, spokesman for the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, said in a Facebook post that her death was being investigated as a murder but that it was possible it could have been an accident. He shared images of the railway line above
A witness shows authorities where he discovered the badly-beaten victim lying by the tracks
Ukrainian police said a work identity card for the US Embassy was found in the victim's belongings.
'The unconscious woman was admitted to a hospital where she subsequently died,' Ukrainian police said on Facebook.
'During the examination of the victim's belongings, an identity card of an employee of the U.S. Embassy in her name was found.'
Police said they are looking for a tall dark-haired man aged 30 to 40 and dressed in dark shorts, a t-shirt and dark blue running shoes in connection to the assault.
The US Embassy in Kiev confirmed Wednesday to DailyMail.com that the victim is a US citizen.
'We are heartbroken to report the death of an American member of the U.S. Embassy Kyiv community,' they said in a statement.
'Officials from U.S. Embassy Kyiv are currently working with authorities to determine the circumstances of the death.'
No further details have been officially released about the victim's identity but a US source told The Guardian she was the wife of a US foreign service officer, and worked in a non-diplomatic job in the embassy.
The victim was found close to the railway line above where investigators were seen working Wednesday. Shevchenko said she was wearing athletic wear and headphones, suggesting she was out jogging at the time
The US Embassy in Kiev confirmed the victim was an American employee
The Ukrainian Ambassador to the US also tweeted his condolences to the family
The Ukrainian Ambassador to the US Volodymyr Yelchenko tweeted his condolences to the family and called for justice.
'Terrible news. My deepest condolences to the family and friends. Perpetrators must be found and prosecuted swiftly,' tweeted Yelchenko.
Artem Shevchenko, spokesman for the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, said in a Facebook post that her death was being investigated as a murder but that it was possible it could have been an accident.
'The National Police of Ukraine is investigating her death as a deliberate murder ... but an accidental death is not ruled out. The body was in sports clothes and wearing headphones,' he wrote.
'The death of such reckless pedestrians as a result of injuries (caused by a) train is not uncommon on the railways.'
The US Embassy in Ukraine's current chief of mission Kristina Kvien
He shared images of the railway line where the victim was found and said she was wearing athletic wear and headphones.
The victim's body has been sent to a forensic examiner to determine the cause of death and police are interviewing witnesses.
Around 181 Americans and 560 Ukrainians are employed at the embassy, which is based on the eastern edge of Kyiv's Nyvky Park and is only half a mile from where the woman was found.
The embassy's current chief of mission is Kristina Kvien.
The US Department of State directed DailyMail.com's request for comment to the statement from the US Embassy in Ukraine.
Kiev has long been seen by American diplomats as a relatively safe posting, with no reported attacks on workers in recent years.
Tensions have increased somewhat between the two nations after Donald Trump allegedly tried to put pressure on the Ukrainian government to spread damaging narratives about Joe Biden, sparking Trump's impeachment trial in January.