Russian human rights activists back Gusinsky

MOSCOW (AFP) – Russian human rights activists appealed in an open letter sent to Greek authorities yesterday not to extradite former Russian media tycoon Vladimir Gusinsky, who is wanted here on $250 million fraud charges. Gusinsky was arrested at Athens Airport on August 11, and remanded in custody. On Friday, the Council of Appeals Court Judges released him on a 100,000-euro bail pending a decision on his possible extradition to Russia. The letter addressed to the Greek justice minister and chief prosecutor – and signed by such prominent Russian rights activist as Yelena Bonner and representatives from the Memorial group – said the case against Gusinsky was political. It argued that President Vladimir Putin was out for revenge because the exiled media magnate’s former holdings reported critically on the war in Chechnya.

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