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Kremlin calls in top Russian protest leader for questioning

Experts say that the Kremlin's probe into Sergei Udaltsov – launched after a documentary accused him of trying to undermine the government – is meant to discredit him and other protest leaders.

Russian opposition leader Sergey Udaltsov speaks at a protest rally in Moscow, in this Sept. 15 file photo.

Mikhail Metzel/AP/File

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Russian left-wing leader Sergei Udaltsov has been summoned for "questioning" by the Kremlin's powerful Investigative Committee on Wednesday, after a murky documentary film broadcast Friday on the state-run NTV network accused him of plotting to overthrow President Vladimir Putin using funds provided by a Georgian parliamentarian and anti-Putin business exiles in London.

Mr. Udaltsov predicted on his blog Saturday that the film was part of a Kremlin plan to charge him with treason, based on a new law that's working its way through the Russian State Duma that would redefine treason to include almost any political activist who works with foreigners against Russian national security interests as defined by the authorities.

"The existence of any instances of financing from Western intelligence and... of 'coup attempts' would lead toward the opening of highly publicized criminal cases against me," Udaltsov, a veteran left-wing street protester, wrote.


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