Khodorkovsky, Lebedev did not use their right to be pardoned - Medvedev

A decision on pardoning former Yukos CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky and former Menatep CEO Platon Lebedev will be made after they make appropriate requests to the Russian president, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said.

Responding to a question about Khodorkovsky in an interview with Agence France-Presse and Figaro, Medvedev recalled that when he was president of Russia he would often say that "there is a court ruling and everyone needs to observer it."

"There was a possibility to appeal. As far as I understand, this procedure was conducted and further appeal against the second sentence is still in progress. Finally, convicts have a right to be pardoned. The convicts did not use this right. I am not analyzing the reasons why they have not done so now, but they didn't use it," Medvedev said.

If Khodorkovsky and Lebedev had made an appropriate request, "it would have been up to the president to pardon them or not," Medvedev said, adding that "they did not make it" when he was president.

The prime minister agreed that now it is up to Khodorkovsky and Lebedev to make the moves.

"In this sense, no doubt, like any person convicted by court. If a person has been found guilty, he can request to be pardoned. People have made such requests to me. I declined some of them and I granted some of them. I believe it's absolutely normal," Medvedev said.

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