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Bashkir President Urged To Quit Russian Ruling Party

Ayrat Dilmukhametov
UFA, Bashkortostan -- A Bashkir opposition activist who is being investigated for possibly "instigating extremism" is calling on Bashkortstan President Murtaza Rakhimov to quit Russia's ruling Unified Russia party, RFE/RL's Tatar-Bashkir Service reports.

In an open letter to Rakhimov, Ayrat Dilmukhametov says that "after saying 'A,' one should be consistent and say also the less-pleasant letters as well [by resigning from the party]."

Dilmukhametov was alluding to Rakhimov's harsh criticism last month about Unified Russia being "undemocratic" and its leaders being "incompetent."

Rakhimov also said that the Russian Federation is now more centralized and authoritarian than the Soviet Union was under Leonid Brezhnev.

Dilmukhametov, 42, supports the president's critique but urges Rakhimov to take the next step and quit the ruling party.

Dilmukhametov is known for his hypercritical views of the current Russian government and has been in detention in Ufa since April.

He is accused of making public appeals for extremism.