Russia’s opposition tycoon, Khodorkovsky, foresees 1917-like crisis under Putin

Russia’s opposition tycoon, Khodorkovsky, foresees 1917-like crisis under Putin

[Ed. – In case it’s not clear, Asia’s “coming apart at the seams” too.]

Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the one-time oil tycoon who spent a decade in President Vladimir Putin’s prisons, said Russia is nearing an economic crisis that could fuel an uprising similar to the country’s 1917 revolution.

“I fear that Putin is going to bring the country to a crisis much more quickly than many would like,” Khodorkovsky, 51, said in an interview with Charlie Rose in New York. Russia could end up seeing “a repeat of 1917 when a person brings the country to an economic crisis, and we are certainly moving right in that direction.” …

Khodorkovsky, once Russia’s richest man with a fortune of $15 billion, funded opposition parties before his arrest and campaigned from prison for Russia to develop a civil society. He was freed after receiving a presidential pardon in December. Khodorkovsky maintained his innocence after being convicted for tax evasion, money-laundering and oil embezzlement, saying the cases against him were retribution for financing political parties that opposed Putin. …

Russia’s economy will expand 0.5 percent next year, the International Monetary Fund said this week, cutting its previous growth forecast in half amid fallout from the conflict in Ukraine and the weaker currency. …

Khodorkovsky, who has been living in exile in Switzerland since his release, said last month’s house arrest of Russian billionaire Vladimir Evtushenkov is the result of shifting political influence within the Kremlin.

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