(JTA) — Switzerland granted a three-month visa to former Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky.
The former Yukos oil chief had spent 10 years in a Russian prison and was released Dec. 20 after Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would pardon him. Khodorkovsky was reunited with his family in Berlin a day later. Khodorkovsky reportedly had requested the pardon in order to be with his ill mother.
The Swiss visa allows Khodorkovsky to travel in most countries of the European Union and several other countries, including Switzerland.
Khodorkovsky’s nine-year prison term began in 2003 and was extended to August 2014 after he was found guilty in a new trial of money laundering and oil theft. After Khodorkovsky was jailed, Yukos was broken up and sold off.
Khodorkovsky, who has Jewish parentage, once was the richest man in Russia.