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Jailed Khodorkovskii Says He'll Run For Russian Duma

Khodorkovskii (file photo) 31 August 2005 -- Jailed Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovskii announced that he intends to run for a parliamentary seat in a by-election expected to be held later this year or in early 2006.

In a statement on his website today, Khodorkovskii said he has decided to be a candidate as a State Duma deputy in Moscow.

Khodorkovskii was convicted on fraud and tax-evasion charges earlier this year and sentenced to nine years in jail. His supporters say Khodorkovskii's prosecution was an attempt by the Kremlin to silence him as a possible political rival.

Under Russian law, Khodorkovskii can run for political office as long as his appeal is pending.