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Navalny, Khodorkovsky Join Forces to Honor Anti-Graft Crusaders

Opposition activist Alexei Navalny and self-exiled former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky will begin awarding anti-corruption campaigners generously in 2015.

Khodorkovsky announced the establishment of a system of anti-corruption awards on Wednesday via Twitter, saying 50 of them would be handed out next year, along with cash prizes of 100,000 rubles each.

The awards aim to acknowledge the fight against corruption in all of its various forms, Navalny wrote in a blog post Wednesday. "Some people fight police abuse. Some get caught up in the courts. Some battle con artists, real estate developers. … These people need to be assisted," he wrote, adding that more often than not, anti-graft crusaders wound up being persecuted rather than rewarded.

The prizes will be financed by Khodorkovsky and by donation, Navalny wrote, adding that his Foundation to Fight Corruption will contribute by providing infrastructure and logistics.

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