B.Halligan at yorksj.ac.uk
Tue Jul 1 10:54:54 MDT 2003
can't work out if this is good thing or a bad thing...
Russian author freed on parole
Limonov says he will not abandon his convictions
An ultra-nationalist Russian author has been freed on parole after being
imprisoned for arms possession.
Eduard Limonov was released for good behaviour after serving half of his
four-year sentence in the southern Saratov region.
Limonov, the leader of the National Bolshevik Party, was convicted in
April along with five others but had spent time in custody before the
The six men were cleared of more serious charges of attempted terrorism
and planning to undermine the state.
Sixty-year-old Limonov was once seen as a dissident writer. He left the
Soviet Union in the communist era and published 15 novels and essays.
But after his return to Russia in the early 1990s, he became involved in
ultra-nationalist politics and formed his own party.
Limonov said after his parole was announced that he would not abandon
his convictions but would try to behave like a good citizen.
"I want to leave Saratov as quickly as possible, drink some cognac and
try a woman," he said in an interview for the newspaper Gazeta.
He said he had no plans to continue writing, having in prison written a
play and eight books, five of which have been published.
He was arrested in Siberia last year after four party supporters were
found to have guns and ammunition.
The writer was accused of attempting to form what amounted to a private
army, to invade an area of Kazakhstan where many ethnic Russians live.
But the trial judge in the city of Saratov said the more serious charges
had not been proved.
The human rights group Amnesty International says Limonov is a political
He has dual Russian and French nationality.
"Pchela": What's leftist and what's rightist in Russia and in the world?
Eduard Limonov: There's no longer any left or right. There's the system
and the enemies of the system. The system is the liberal democracy that
triumphed everywhere, that noxious, shit-colored weed. The enemies of
the system-that's who we are, extreme Communists, extreme nationalists.
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