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Russian billionaire Prokhorov tries to step into politics again

December 13, 2011, 11:49 UTC+3

Porkhorov’s first attempt to enter politics failed, the daily reminded

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MOSCOW, December 13 (Itar-Tass) —  Russian tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov announced on Monday he would run for presidency. The opposition believes that this decision has been coordinated with the country’s leaders. The reaction of political scientists to this statement is controversial – some are glad that a candidate for a protest vote emerged and others are confident that this is the Kremlin-lobbied project.

“If anyone likes or dislikes this, Putin is still the only person who somehow controls this ineffective state machine,” Prokhorov wrote in his LiveJournal blog four days ago, the Vedomosti daily noted. A day before this Vladimir Putin submitted his documents to the central election commission to be officially registered as a candidate in the March 2012 presidential race. However, yesterday former businessman Prokhorov suddenly proposed an alternative to the society – his own candidacy. “I took this decision and this is probably the most serious decision in my life,” he said.

Porkhorov’s first attempt to enter politics failed, the daily reminded. Leaving his business for reviving the Right Cause party on a deal with the president and his administration, already in three months Prokhorov accused his former associates of illegal takeover of the party describing the first deputy head of the president’s administration, Vladislav Surkov, as “the Kremlin puppeteer” and promised to seek his resignation. Leaving the party he did not rule out that he will create a new political movement independent of the Kremlin. However, Prokhorov has not raised this theme in public since then.

At present, the authorities feverishly try to shake down the wave of people’s anger, prominent opposition politician Boris Nemstsov said. He expressed confidence that Prokhorov’s nomination for presidency is a deal with Putin – a new candidate should stir up the opposition ranks and finally support Putin at the elections in exchange for an opportunity to register his party or get a position in the government.

The co-chair of the Right Cause party, Boris Nadezhdin, told the Kommersant business daily that he welcomes “Prokhorov’s nomination – there will be a candidate for those who do not accept Putin and Zyuganov.” He said he himself will vote for Mikhail Prokhorov. Moreover, Nadezhdin was ready “to help technologically to create a liberal-democratic party that should incorporate the interests of a part of bureaucracy, business community and street protesters.”

Russian television presenter Ksenia Sobchak was one of the first persons to react to the news on Prokhorov’s nomination, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta daily wrote. “Prokhorov was again called up to divert votes. Everything has been coordinated. The Kremlin realized that an alternative is necessary,” she wrote in Twitter. She was eagerly supported by many other bloggers, who wrote that “they framed up everything” and that Prokhorov’s nomination is not accidentally coincided with the recent rallies.

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