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Rybkin Will Continue Russian Presidential Campaign

Moscow, 13 February 2004 (RFE/RL) -- Russian presidential candidate Ivan Rybkin, who recently disappeared for five days, says he has decided to continue his campaign.

Russian news agencies quoted Rybkin as saying on a visit to London that he had chosen to remain in the race for the 14 March presidential poll.

Rybkin, a critic of President Vladimir Putin, was expected to meet in London with exiled Russian businessman Boris Berezovskii, who backs Rybkin's Liberal Russia party.

Rybkin returned to Moscow from Kyiv on 10 February after disappearing late last week. He has not given a clear explanation of what occurred during his absence.

President Putin on 12 February launched his re-election campaign, pledging to introduce quicker reforms and improve the lives of Russian citizens if he wins another four-year term.

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