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Reading into the Bakhmina Release

The Financial Times quotes some reactions to the early parole of Svetlana Bakhmina:

“I think this decision is political,” Sergei Mitrokhin, head of the liberal Yabloko party, told Reuters.

“It could be one of the signals given by the president to society about some kind of ‘humanisation’. This must be hailed.”

But a Bakhmina lawyer warned against drawing hasty and over-optimistic conclusions.

“It is self-evident that Bakhmina’s case had been long overdue for revision because it had reached a stage when the cruelty of her further custody was just becoming outrageous,” Semyon Aria told Reuters after the court’s ruling.

“But this (ruling) cannot serve as an indicator of the authorities’ changed attitude to Yukos, because Khodorkovsky’s new case is still being heard … This ruling (on Bakhmina) cannot be viewed as a symptom of something bigger.”