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Kazakh Oligarch Denied Bail In France

Mukhtar Ablyazov
Fugitive Kazakh oligarch Mukhtar Ablyazov, wanted in Kazakhstan for allegedly embezzling up to $6 billion from his former bank BTA, has been denied release on bail in France.

Ablyazov's lawyer told reporters that a French appeals court decided that, for his own safety, Ablyazov should not be released.

Ablyazov, 50, is an outspoken critic of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev.

He fled Kazakhstan in 2009.

Ablyazov says the case against him is politically motivated.

French authorities arrested him on July 31 on the French Riviera acting upon a request from Ukraine.

Russia and Ukraine have also brought fraud charges against Ablyazov and officially requested his extradition from France.

Kazakhstan has no extradition agreement with France, but it has bilateral agreements with Russia and Ukraine.

Based on reporting by Reuters and ITAR-TASS