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Russian Lawmaker Steps Down After Holocaust Comments

A deputy from the Smolensk city council, Andrei Yershov, has resigned from his post amid controversy over his comments on benefits for Holocaust survivors.

During a mid-October city council debate on granting privileges such as free passage on buses and trains to people who as children were incarcerated in Nazi concentration camps, Yershov said, "Why? For the simple reason that they were not finished off."

The comments were caught on audio recording and posted on the Internet, sparking an outcry for Yershov to resign.

Yershov is a member of Russian President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party.

Based on reporting by Interfax and AFP