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Russia detains opposition figure Gozman over dual Israeli citizenship

Leonid Gozman poses for a photo with other members of the new Kremlin-friendly Right Cause party, during the party's founding congress in Moscow, Nov. 16, 2008. (Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File)
Leonid Gozman poses for a photo with other members of the new Kremlin-friendly Right Cause party, during the party's founding congress in Moscow, Nov. 16, 2008. (Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File)

Russian authorities detain a liberal politician who recently returned to Moscow from abroad, the latest move in a relentless crackdown on dissent amid Moscow’s military action in Ukraine.

Leonid Gozman was detained after the Russian Interior Ministry issued a warrant for his arrest while investigating a criminal case against him.

Gozman has been accused of breaching the law that requires Russian citizens to notify authorities about a foreign citizenship or a residency permit. If found guilty, Gozman could be sentenced to a fine or community work.

Gozman notified the authorities about his Israeli citizenship but they claimed that he failed to do so within the required time.

Gozman, a vocal critic of the Kremlin’s campaign in Ukraine, left Russia when it started but returned in June in what he described as a “moral” choice.

The Russian Justice Ministry has listed him as a “foreign agent,” a description that carries a strong pejorative meaning and implies additional government scrutiny.

Gozman’s lawyer, Mikhail Biryukov, says the politician was detained on the Moscow subway and taken to a police station.

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