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Russian Activist Navalny Opens Campaign Office in Tatarstan, Calls For More Decentralization


Russian opposition political activist and anticorruption campaigner Aleksei Navalny stopped in Russia's Republic of Tatarstan on March 5 in an early tour ahead of his campaign for Russia's presidency in 2018. At a news conference in Tatarstan's capital, Kazan, Navalny said "money and more powers" should be given to the semiautonomous region. The activist arrived in Kazan while on his way from Ufa, the capital of another semiautonomous Russian region -- the Republic of Bashkortostan. After opening election-campaign facilities in both Ufa and Kazan, he now has six such offices throughout Russia. Navalny announced in December 2016 that he would run for president in March 2018, but Russian authorities say he will be barred from public office as he has been convicted of financial crimes in two separate trials. Navalny says the court verdicts were politically motivated punishment for his opposition to Russian President Vladimir Putin. (RFE/RL's Tatar-Bashkir Service)

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