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Khodorkovsky Says Switzerland Is Likely Haven After Putin Pardon

Dec. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the former oil tycoon, said he’ll “most likely” settle in Switzerland following his release from 10 years in prison on a pardon from President Vladimir Putin.

Khodorkovsky will consult with his wife, Inna, when she arrives tomorrow from Moscow with their three children, he said today in an interview in Berlin. He said he hasn’t formally applied for residency in Switzerland, where his twin sons are in school.

The surprise reprieve announced by Putin Dec. 19 allowed Khodorkovsky to leave a penal colony near the Finnish border eight months short of his 11-year sentence and fly to Germany to await his family. He faces possible additional charges and fines in Russia, while his former business partner Platon Lebedev remains in prison.

Khodorkovsky repeated today that he plans to live in exile until he feels secure to return to Russia. At a tumultuous news conference yesterday attended by hundreds of reporters, he said he fears being barred from leaving his homeland if he returns.

Khodorkovsky was reunited with parents, eldest son Pavel and granddaughter Diana on Dec. 21, according to his website. His wife had had to deal with paperwork before she could leave Moscow with their teenaged twin sons, Gleb and Ilya, and older daughter Anastasia, he said.

Khodorkovsky traveled to the German capital with the support of Chancellor Angela Merkel and former Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher, who arranged for him to fly on a private jet to Berlin’s Schoenefeld airport. He said yesterday he has a yearlong German visa.

To contact the reporters on this story: Henry Meyer in Moscow at hmeyer4@bloomberg.net; Irina Reznik in Moscow at ireznik@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net; Hellmuth Tromm at htromm@bloomberg.net

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