Topic: The History of a Yukos CEO
MOSCOW, November 8 (RIA Novosti)
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- Khodorkovsky’s ex-cellmate applies for asylum in UK
- Court rejects Khodorkovsky gay claim by former cellmate
- Rally in support of Russia’s Khodorkovsky held near White House
Jailed Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky has said he will never admit he is guilty of the crimes he was convicted of, even if offered early parole.
Khodorkovsky, who has been convicted in two separate trials since his arrest in 2003, denies the charges against him. He claims his imprisonment over alleged tax evasion and money laundering is politically motivated. The Kremlin has denied the allegations.
He is not eligible for release until at least 2016, but can apply for parole. Two separate appeals have already been rejected, however.
“Perjury is a grave sin," he said, responding to users’ questions on the website of the liberal radio station Ekho Moskvy. “By saving oneself this way, you drown others.”
“I will not buy freedom at the cost of perjury.”
He also hit out at life in present-day Russia, saying under Prime Minister Vladimir Putin things depended entirely on the “mindset, opinions and ambitions of one man."
Khodorkovsky, once Russia’s richest man, was seen as a potential challenger to Putin.
He said “attempts to save the empire” in Russia had brought it close to “national suicide.”
“As long as Russia retains its imperial syndrome, there will be no democracy.”
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If attempts to drag Russia into a direct military conflict in Ukraine are successful, it would be a catastrophe for Russia comparable to the 1979-1989 Afghan war. There is no direct evidence that the US is trying to bring about a second Afghan war, but indirect evidence abounds.