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Former Pussy Riot Lawyer Says Russian Officials Still Won't Let Him Leave the Country

The Moscow branch of Russia’s Federal Bailiff Service has forbid attorney Mark Feygin from leaving the country, he announced today on Twitter. He was trying to reach Lithuania.

Feygin is famous for defending the three women of Pussy Riot, as well as several other Russian political cases in the years since, including Ukrainian prisoner of war Nadezhda Savchenko and oppositionist Leonid Razvozzhayev. He is currently the defense lawyer for Roman Sushchenko, a Ukrainian citizen accused of espionage against Russia.

“They’re not letting me out of Russia, so I’m here at a Federal Bailiff Service base,” Feygin said on Thursday, tweeting a photo of a document confirming the government’s refusal to allow him to go abroad.

“The reason, of course, is purely political,” he said, arguing that Moscow is trying to make it harder for him to “act widely around the world” when it comes to defending Russian and Ukrainian political prisoners.

This summer, officials revoked Feygin’s foreign travel rights, citing allegedly unpaid debts. The lawyer says the government has documentation verifying that he’s paid all his debts, however. He is now threatening to sue the Moscow’s bailiff office for abusing its power.

Feygin says the ban on his foreign travel makes it impossible to speak at international conventions and meet with important human rights figures outside Russia.

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