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Russian Opposition Protests Khodorkovsky Trial

A demonstration in May in support of Khodorkovsky

A demonstration in May in support of Khodorkovsky

MOSCOW -- Activists from the opposition Solidarnost (Solidarity) movement are picketing the Khamovnichesky Court building in Moscow to protest against the trial of former Yukos chief Mikhail Khodorkovsky, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Former Russian Deputy Prime Minister Boris Nemtsov, former chess champion Garry Kasparov, and prominent human rights activist Lev Ponomarev are among the protesters.

Khodorkovsky and business associate Platon Lebedev were sentenced to eight-year terms in 2004 on charges of fraud and tax evasion during their leadership of the Yukos oil company. They are now being tried on new charges of money laundering and theft.

Both defendants deny the charges and say they are politically motivated.