Russian tycoon to head pro-Kremlin party

AP News
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Posted: May 16, 2011 2:04 PM
Russian tycoon to head pro-Kremlin party

Russian tycoon and New Jersey Nets basketball team owner Mikhail Prokhorov says his decision to head a pro-Kremlin political party was an "uneasy" one.

Prokhorov said Monday he would head the Just Cause party _ what he later called in televised remarks "an uneasy and somewhat surprising decision."

Just Cause hopes to win legislature seats in December parliamentary elections.

The establishing of the party is widely seen by critics as an attempt by the Kremlin to lure opposition-minded, pro-business voters, while creating an illusion of competition with the ruling United Russia party ahead of elections.

Prokhorov, who made a fortune in metals and banking, bought a majority share in the New Jersey Nets basketball team last May.