Mittens and Chocolate to Raise Awareness of Khodorkovsky


Here goes an unusually creative grassroots effort to raise awareness of the second trial of Mikhail Khodorkovsky.  From the Moscow Times:

Mikhail Khodorkovsky chocolate bars and coarse brown mittens that he could have knitted in prison were delivered to 1,000 celebrities and journalists around the country Wednesday by an painter who said she wanted to highlight his plight.

Yekaterina Belyavskaya, the 29-year-old Moscow artist behind the initiative, said she did not want people to forget the former Yukos billionaire and had included him on her mailing list.

“This is a purely artistic project without any political meaning. We just wanted to remind people about his fate,” Belyavskaya told The Moscow Times.

Belyavskaya said she had decided to send the Khodorkovskymemorabilia to “friendly people,” including novelist GeorgyChkhartishvili, film director Sergei Solovyov and Federation CouncilSpeaker Sergei Mironov.

Chkhartishvili, better known by his pen name Boris Akunin, hasinterviewed Khodorkovsky for the Russian edition of Esquire magazine,while Solovyov was among dozens of intellectuals who signed a letter toPresident Dmitry Medvedev to free former Yukos employee SvetlanaBakhmina from prison.

Khodorkovsky spokesman Maxim Dbar said the tycoon’s defense team wasnot involved in the project. Still, he gave his blessing to it. “Wesupport any means of bringing attention to the case,” he said.