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Russian Oppositionists End Hunger Strike In Novosibirsk

Six Russian opposition activists ended a hunger strike on August 8 after one of them was hospitalized following 12 days of going without food to protest being barred from elections.

The activists in Novosibirsk said their decision was in response to urging from opposition leader Aleksei Navalny and two other prominent opposition figures.

Navalny had called on the activists to abandon the strike for the sake of their health and devote their energies instead to organizing a protest in Moscow on September 13, the day local elections are scheduled across Russia.

Leonid Volkov, who was leading the opposition campaign for the regional legislature in Novosibirsk, agreed.

Volkok wrote on his website: "The right for elections has been taken away from us -- no more illusions -- so we must hurry to make use of the right to walk through the streets before it is taken away, too."

The opposition was barred from the race for the Novosibirsk legislature when the local election commission found fault with some of the 12,000 signatures submitted to register candidates.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP