Russia is to open a criminal investigation into a call by exiled Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky for the overthrow of President Vladimir Putin, the chief prosecutor said on Friday.
"I've already given an instruction to the relevant authorities to open a criminal case since we clearly have here an open call for the violent overthrow of constitutional rule," Prosecutor-General Yuri Chaika said in televised remarks.
Billionaire Berezovsky, who was granted asylum in Britain after fleeing Russia following Putin's election in 2000, used an interview with the British newspaper, the Guardian, to call for a revolution in Russia to topple the Kremlin chief.
"We need to use force to change this regime," he told the newspaper.
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said it was time Britain reviewed Berezovsky's status.
"There are a lot of talented lawyers in London. Calls for the violent overthrow of constitutional rule in another country are sufficient grounds to take the necessary legal measures," Interfax news agency quoted Lavrov as saying.
A British judge has previously ruled against a Russian request for his extradition.
After fleeing Russia, Berezovky set up a base in Britain from where he has frequently criticized Putin and Kremlin policy.
Last month Russian investigators flew to London to interview him over the radiation poisoning of ex-KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko.
Last Mod: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16