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Russian authorities place opposition lawyer on wanted list

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By SHEJI HALIMA

Ilya Novikov

MOSCOW- Criminal proceedings were initiated against Russian lawyer and human rights defender, Ilya Novikov and he was placed on the wanted list.

The Ria Novosti state news agency reported on Thursday, citing the Russian interior ministry.

No details of the specific allegations were provided.

Novikov came to prominence as a defence attorney in the trials against the human rights organisation Memorial and the Anti-Corruption Fund set up by Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.

The lawyer, who comes from a Russian-Ukrainian family, also previously defended Ukrainian pilot Nadiya Savchenko and filmmaker Oleg Sentsov, who were separately captured and jailed in Russia after the outbreak of hostilities in Ukraine in 2014.

Both were later released in prisoner swaps.

Novikov has been living in Ukraine for a year and is said to have joined a unit of the Ukrainian territorial defence unit after the Russian invasion in February.

In late November, the Justice Ministry in Moscow declared him a “foreign agent’’.(dpa/NAN)

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