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Russian Duma Speaker Rejects Proposal To Honor Slain Nemtsov

The Russian parliament's lower house has rejected a lawmaker's proposal to hold a minute of silence honoring slain opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, a former lawmaker in the State Duma.

Dmitry Gudkov, one of only a handful of opposition lawmakers left in the Duma, which is dominated by the Kremlin-controlled United Russia party, made the proposal on March 17.

Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin refused to hold a vote on Gudkov's proposal, saying that he had already expressed condolences to Nemtsov's relatives on the Duma's behalf by sending them a telegram.

Commenting on Gudkov's proposal, ultranationalist lawmaker Vladimir Zhirinovsky said that Duma deputies "stand up only on a decision by the Duma's council or on days of national mourning."

Regional lawmaker and former Deputy Prime Minister Nemtsov, a vocal opponent of President Vladimir Putin, was shot dead near the Kremlin on February 27.

Nemtsov was a Duma member from 1999 to 2003.

Based on reporting by TASS, Interfax, RIA Novosti, and Ekho Moskvy