The State Duma may pass the amnesty bill before December 25, Russian Human Rights Ombudsman Vladimir Lukin told Interfax on Thursday.

"We have reached an agreement with the State Duma administration: they hope to pass the draft resolution on the amnesty in the first reading on December 17. It will be possible to speak about amendments after the first reading. I will present my amendments to the text after December 17," Lukin said.

"The State Duma should adopt the amnesty resolution in the period from today till December 25, when the constitution entered into force. If they hold the first reading on [December] 17, then a week after the first reading there will be the third reading, the signing and the publishing and concrete work on the fulfillment of this resolution will begin," Lukin said.

Amnesty bill could mean release for Pussy Riot, Khodorkovsky

Former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky and members of the punk rock band Pussy Riot could be released early if the Russian parliament adopts a proposed amnesty bill that would apply to non-violent offenders, mothers, and prisoners who have already served most of their sentence. Read more>>>

The information in this section is provided by the Interfax news agency and is intended for personal use only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any form without express permission from Interfax. To request permission to republish, email: