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Sobyanin Dismisses Prokhorov's Mayoral Bid at Opposition Minded Cafe

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said that billionaire turned politician Mikhail Prokhorov would hardly be interested in his job and added that a lot of things in Moscow only get done if he intervenes directly.

Referring to Prokhorov's announcement that he would run for city mayor, Sobyanin questioned his ambitions, calling him a "federal-level politician."

"I don't think he will be interested in the city mayor post," Sobyanin said in an interview with Moskovskiye Novosti, published Thursday.

The next election for the city mayor post will be in 2015.

The interview took place in Jean-Jacques cafe in downtown Moscow, known as a popular meeting place of liberal intelligentsia who oppose the Kremlin. On May 7, 2012, several riot police officers broke into the cafe to detain protesters who took part in the rally against President Vladimir Putin's inauguration.

Sobyanin said that he favors dialog with the so called "creative class" within the existing governmental channels like the city's Public Chamber. However, it is seen as ineffective by many opposition-minded activists.

The mayor also said that his personal presence guarantees that things get done, adding that Putin rarely calls him.

"If you just fly over and give orders without understanding how they will be done, nothing will happen. They will not be done or will be done the wrong way. That's why I have to be on the spot to get the right information," Sobyanin said.

Sobyanin added that the city will go ahead with plans to reconstruct Leninsky Prospekt, despite protests by people living in the area.

"If we don't reconstruct Leninsky Prospekt it will turn into a traffic jam which means cars sitting and pumping out fumes. I don't think people will feel better because of it," he said.

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