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Putin Opponent Released From Bulgaria Custody

A critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin who was detained in Bulgaria after an extradition request from Moscow has been released.

Nicolay Koblyakov, who has dual Russian and French nationality, was held for 72 hours after being detained at Sofia airport on July 29.

Koblyakov is wanted by Russia on suspicion of fraud. His lawyers have said the case is politically motivated.

On August 1, a court in Sofia ordered Koblyakov to be released on condition he does not leave the country, ruling that his actions cannot be classified as fraud, or any crime, under Bulgarian law.

Prosecutors had asked the court to order a temporary detention for Koblyakov for hiding from the Russian authorities. They can appeal against the court's decision.

Koblyakov is a founder of the French non-governmental organization Russie-Libertes, which has staged anti-Putin protests in France.

Based on reporting by Reuters and BTA