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Lawmaker says attempts to broaden amnesty bill to cover Navalny case 'plain PR'

July 22, 2013, 13:45 UTC+3

"It is impossible to make amendments to the law, which has entered into force and is in effect" Pavel Krasheninnikov said

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MOSCOW, July 22 (Itar-Tass) - Chairman of the State Duma Committee for Civil, Criminal, Arbitration and Procedural Legislation Pavel Krasheninnikov said several Russian MPs’ proposals to broaden the amnesty bill to cover the Alexei Navalny case can be considered “pure PR”.

“It is impossible to make amendments to the law, which has entered into force and is in effect. It is theoretically impossible,” Krasheninnikov told Itar-Tass on Monday.

The Izvestia newspaper writes that several State Duma deputies of the A Just Russia party will submit the amendments to the law on economic amnesty to the autumn session. The party’s members believe that all points of Article 159 of the Criminal Code (Fraud) and Article 160 of the Criminal Code (Embezzlement) should be added. Thus, anti-corruption blogger Alexei Navalny, who was sentenced to five years in jail for 16 million rouble embezzlement, will be able to be freed in several months, the newspaper writes.

“If they want a new amnesty, let’s work and we’ll debate,” Krasheninnikov said.

However, the committee’s chairman considers wrong to raise the question based on one precedent. “Unlike reconciliation amnesty is not an individual act. It is related to everyone who committed the crime under this article,” he explained.

“This is plain political PR,” Krasheninnikov added.

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