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Berezovsky says planning Russian revolution: paper
LONDON (Reuters) - Russian billionaire Boris Berezovsky said he is planning a revolution in Russia to topple President Vladimir Putin, in comments published on Friday.
"We need to use force to change this regime," Berezovsky, who has received asylum in Britain, told the Guardian newspaper.
"It isn't possible to change this regime through democratic means. There can be no change without force, pressure."
Asked if he was fomenting a revolution, he said: "You are absolutely correct."
Berezovsky, a vocal critic of Putin, said he was in contact with members of Russia's political elite.
He said these people -- who he did not name because, he said, that would endanger their lives -- shared his opinion that Putin was eroding democratic reforms, centralizing power and infringing Russia's constitution, according to the Guardian.
"There is no chance of regime change through democratic elections," Berezovsky said.
"If one part of the political elite disagrees with another part of the political elite -- that is the only way in Russia to change the regime. I try to move that."
The businessman said he was offering his "experience and ideology" to his contacts, adding: "There are also practical steps which I am doing now, and mostly it is financial."
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov condemned the comments as a criminal offence and hoped they would prompt questions about Berezovsky's refugee status in Britain, the Guardian said.
"In accordance with our legislation (his remarks are) being treated as a crime. It will cause some questions from the British authorities to Mr Berezovsky," Peskov was quoted as saying. "We want to believe that official London will never grant asylum to someone who wants to use force to change the regime in Russia."
Last month, Berezovsky met Russian investigators in London to answer questions over the killing of ex-KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko. He has also launched a $500,000 foundation in honor of Litvinenko who was poisoned and died in London last November.
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