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Ex-Russia politician Khasbulatov, key figure in 1993 crisis, dead at 80

Ruslan Khasbulatov was a key figure in a power struggle between 1993 and 1995 that ended with tanks shelling the legislature. He has now died at 80.

Khasbulatov was an academic from the southern republic in Chechnya who was elected as the chairman of parliament in October 1991. He remained the chairperson of the legislature until the collapse of the Soviet Union at the end.

At first, he was an ally to Boris Yeltsin, but they parted ways after far-reaching economic reforms by the government caused living standards in Russia to plummet.

Yeltsin declared dissolution of parliament in September 1993. The Parliament responded by declaring the measure null and void, and appointing an acting president.

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After bloody clashes in Moscow between Yeltsin supporters, opponents, and Yeltsin sympathizers, Russian forces bombarded the White House parliament building and set the upper floors on fire. They then occupied the building.

Yeltsin quickly took action to consolidate his power through a series decrees. While Khasbulatov was arrested along with his associates for organizing a mass riot in Kiev, the new parliament granted them amnesty on February 1994.

Khasbulatov went back to school and taught economics in Moscow.

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