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News Brief

August 25, 2004
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Russians are split over the case of a Jewish oil magnate standing trial at a Moscow court. According to a recent poll, 48 percent of Russians do not believe the trial of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, founder of the Yukos oil firm, will be fair. According to the survey, conducted by the Yuri Levada Analytical Center, an independent polling firm, 25 percent of Russians agree that the case was caused by the authorities’ desire to curb Khodorkovsky’s political influence. At the same time, 41 percent said Yukos should be nationalized and its founder sentenced to a long prison term. Khodorkovsky, Russia’s richest man, is being tried on multiple counts, including massive tax evasion and the theft of state property in dubious privatization schemes.

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