Friday, February 13, 2004

Something Fishy?

Rybkin offers a new explanation for his recent disappearance on Feb. 6.

Agence France Presse is now reporting that Russian presidential candidate Ivan Rybkin says he was drugged, kidnapped, and kept unconscious by captors who had lured him to Ukraine.

Rybkin mysteriously disappeared, only to resurface five days later stating that he was suprised by the media coverage of his disappearance, and that he had only gone to visit friends.

According to the AFP, Rybkin said that he had gone to Ukraine believing he would meet with Chechen rebel leader Aslan Maskhadov for peace negotiations.

upon his arrival in Kiev on February 6, Rybkin said he was driven to an apartment where he was told to wait for Maskhadov.

"I had some tea and some sandwiches and suddenly I felt very drowsy," Rybkin said.

"I woke up in yet another totally unfamiliar apartment after an uncertain time."

Rybkin said he was unconscious for four days and regained consciousness on February 10, and told to telephone family or friends in Moscow to say he had taken a short break.

His captors then "showed me a revolting video tape with my participation and they told me it was a plan to compromise me and force me to be cooperative."

"I don't know who kidnapped me, but I know for whose benefit it was done."

He stated he was driven to the airport and boarded a plane back to Moscow.

He would not be drawn on the contents of the tape he mentioned, saying only: I'm not going to comment on the video tape, it was done to compromise me."

"To be able to tell people the truth from now on, I will conduct my campaign from Western Europe," he said in a London hotel alongside his main financial sponsor Boris Berezovsky.

Rybkin is worried about the safety of his family in Russia, and added: "From now on, if my granddaughter would even scrape her knee, I would blame Mr Putin."

The Full Story at Yahoo

Days Ago, He Was Quite Evasive in an Interview with the BBC

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