As reported on yesterday’s news blast, Mikhail Gorbachev has come out in support of Svetlana Bakhmina, one of the Yukos prisoners who along with Mikhail Khodorkovsky has spent years illegally imprisoned. Gorbachev has called upon the Russian leadership for her immediate release. Below is the full translation of the interview with izbrannoye.ru. Mikhail Gorbachev – for pardon for Bakhmina The president of the USSR in an interview with editor-in-chief of the internet-newspaper “Izbrannoye” Lyudmila Telen highly assessed the civic initiative of the internet-community, which is gathering signatures under an Appeal to Dmitry Medvedev with a request to pardon YUKOS ex-lawyer Svetlana Bakhmina. Mikhail Gorbachev, in part, said: “Svetlana Bakhmina has already completed the greater part of her term. She has, to the best of my knowledge, two little boys and she’s pregnant besides, the press writes, she’s to give birth in December. Why hold her behind bars? Methinks, president of Russia Dmitry Anatolievich Medvedev in this situation can make use of his right to a pardon. I would welcome this.”
In such a manner, the president of the USSR – in essence – joined his voice to the nearly 34 thousand persons who had put their signatures under the Appeal to president of the RF Dmitry Medvedev.We will remind that subsequent to the internet-community members of the Public chamber of Russia asked to pardon former YUKOS lawyer Svetlana Bakhmina.In part, the members of the Public chamber wrote:“We ask You to commit an act of mercy and pardon Svetlana Bakhmina, former lawyer of YUKOS… At home she has left two boys… She has already sat half the term, which means she has the right to conditional early release”Under the Appeal to president of the RF Dmitry Medvedev have signed:politicians: Vladimir Ryzkhov, Leonid Gozman, Boris Nemtsov, Vladimir Milov, Boris Vishnevsky, Viktor Sheynis, Denis Belunov, Irina Hakamada, Mariya Gaidar, Boris Nadezhdin;economists: Yegor Gaidar, Sergey Alexashenko;writers: Grigory Chkhartishvili (Boris Akunin), Lyudmia Ulitskaya, Alex Exler, Sergey Gandlevsky, Olga, Kuchkina, Nina Katerli, Viktor Shenderovich, Linor Goralik;director-documentalist Igor Shadkhan; leader of the movement of automobilists “Freedom of choice” Vyacheslav Lysakov;human rights advocates Arseny Roginsky, Lev Ponomarev, Yury Vdovin, Yuri Samodurov, Boris Altshuler, Valentina Melnikova, Grigory Pasko;journalists: Svetlana Sorokina, Alexey Venediktov, Alexander Gordon, Mikhail Leontiev, Alexander Minkin, Sergey Gryzunov, Vitaly Dymarsky, Valery Vyzhutovich, Filipp Bakhtin, Sergey Dorenko, Olga Bakushinskaya, Yuri Vasiliev, Pavel Felgenhauer, Natalia Rostova, Andrey Loshak, Alexander Plyushchev, Marina Korolyova, Irena Lesnevskaya, Sergey Parkhomenko, Sergey Buntman, Denis Dragunsky, Yelena Masyuk, Irina Yasina, Xenia Larina, Manana Aslamazyan, Yulia Latynina, Yevgenia Albats, Vladimir Korsunsky, Yulia Berezovskaya, Natalia Gevorkian, Alexander Holz, Ilya Milstein, Semen Novoprudsky, Anton Nosik, Xenia Basilashvili, Dmitry Staroovoytov, Mikhail Sevelev, Tatiana Skorobogatko, Yelena Kaluzhskaya, Mikhail Kaluzhsky, Leonid Radzikhovsky, Yevgeny Verlin, Lyudmila Telen;sociologists Leonid Sedov, Ella Paneyakh, Tatiana Kutkovets;political scientists Dmitry Furman, Igor Klyamkin, Stanislav Belkovsky;interpreter and political scientist Pavel Palazhchenko [Mikhail Gorbachev’s personal interpreter—Trans.];restauranteur Anton Lyalin;literary scholar Marietta Chudakova;former advisor to the president of the RF Sergey Stankevich;lawyers: Boris Kuznetsov, Boris Zolotukhin, Genrikh Padva, Yelena Liptser and over 37 thousand persons more.Human rights ombudsman in the Russian Federation Vladimir Lukin gave a positive assessment to the action “To help Svetlana Bakhmina”, while chairman of the Council attached to the president of the Russian Federation for furtherance of the development of institutions of civil society and human rights Ella Pamfiolva put her signature under the Appeal.Human rights advocate Elena Bonner, in her turn, asked Svetlana Medvedeva and Lyudmina Putina in an Open letter to obtain the pardon of Svetlana Bakhmina.