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Russian Tycoon Prokhorov Founds Own Party

Mikhail Prokhorov (right) and his sister Irina hold a press conference in Moscow on June 4.
Russian tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov has announced he has created a new political party.

The 47-year-old Prokhorov placed third -- with nearly 8 percent of the vote -- in Russia's March presidential election, which saw Vladimir Putin return to the presidency for a third term.

Prokhorov rarely criticized Putin during the election campaign and has been accused by some of being a Kremlin stooge, a claim he has denied.

On June 4, he said the "only purpose" of the party was to allow people without affiliation to register for elections and enter politics.

He called the group Civic Platform and said it would have only 500 members -- enough to register as a political party under Russian law.

Prokhorov said he himself would not be joining the party, which he said would have "no leaders."

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, and Interfax