A splinter group created by Russian metals tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov has announced it will not take part in parliamentary elections in December.© RIA Novosti. Valery Melnikov
MOSCOW, September 15 (RIA Novosti)
- Right Cause votes to remove Prokhorov as leader
- Prokhorov denies rumors of party split
- Prokhorov says not quitting as Right Cause leader
- Prokhorov backers say Right Cause congress overtaken
A splinter group created by Russian metals tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov has announced it will not take part in parliamentary elections in December.
The Right Cause party voted to oust Prokhorov as leader at a party congress on Thursday.
Prokhorov led a splinter group of supporters who convened in a different location in Moscow.
"I and my supporters will not take part in elections to the State Duma," Prokhorov told reporters. "I intend to meet with the president and prime minister to tell them what's happened."
The oligarch, whose fortune is reportedly worth $22.7 billion, said he had no plans to quit politics and would announce within 10 days whether he would stand for the Russian presidency in March next year.
He also called for his former party to return some 800 million rubles ($26.2 million) donated to it by private investors and businessmen inlcuding his personal friends.
Yury Shuvalov, an MP with the ruling United Russia party, said Right Cause could do "well enough without Prokhorov."
Shuvalov said the tycoon's ouster was the result of his "authoritarian rule" of the party - a sentiment echoed by communist MP Ivan Melnikov, who said Prokhorov was the victim of his own ambitions.
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