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Gaydamak for mayor?

A controversial Russian-Israeli magnate plans to run for
Jerusalem mayor. Arkady Gaydamak announced this week that he will
challenge incumbent Uri Lupoliansky in an election scheduled for
November 2008. “I am certain that the whole city will vote for me,” Gaydamak
told Yediot Achronot on Monday. “Jerusalem is a symbol for the Jewish
people, and I intend to turn it into a symbol of peace and Judaism. The city
will be much better, and not only from an economic perspective. It will
also turn into a symbol of the Jewish spirit.” Lupoliansky’s office had
no immediate comment. Gaydamak, believed to be a billionaire, in
recent months has won Israeli hearts with a high-profile philanthropy campaign. Critics said the Russian immigrant, who speaks little Hebrew, is
trying to buy his way into power. Gaydamak has made little secret of his
political ambitions, saying he eventually could run for prime minister.
Current Prime Minister Ehud Olmert formerly was Jerusalem’s mayor.