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Nemtsov Makes Shortlist For 2015 Sakharov Prize

Boris Nemtsov

BRUSSELS -- Russia's slain opposition politician Boris Nemtsov has made the shortlist for the 2015 Sakharov Prize.

The 50,000-euro prize ($55,000), established by the European Parliament in 1988, is awarded every year to individuals or groups of people who have dedicated their lives to the defense of human rights and freedom of thought.

Nemtsov, a former deputy prime minister, was murdered near the Kremlin in February 2015. He was a vocal critic of President Vladimir Putin.

Not making the shortlist announced on October 15 was imprisoned Ukrainian military pilot and parliament member Nadia Savchenko.

Savchenko says she was captured in 2014 by Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine and handed over to Russia, where she is being tried on charges of participating in the murder of two Russian journalists.

The European Parliament's president, along with the leaders of the chamber's political groups, will pick the winner on October 29.

Our correspondent says Saudi blogger Raif Badawi is the favorite to win.

Venezuela's democratic opposition was the third finalist to make the shortlist.