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Former Russian mayor fined $3,245 for 'discrediting' army

(Reuters) - Russian opposition politician Yevgeny Roizman was fined 260,000 roubles ($3,245) on Friday after a court found him guilty of "discrediting" the Russian army, Russian news agencies reported.

Roizman, a former mayor of Russia's fourth-largest city of Yekaterinburg, was detained last August and banned from the internet after he referred to Moscow's actions in Ukraine as a "war" in a YouTube video.

Russia calls the conflict a "special military operation" and people risk prosecution if they use the words "war" or "invasion".

Since invading Ukraine last year, Russia has prosecuted dozens of people under new laws designed to punish critics of the war and crack down on dissent.

Popular and charismatic, Roizman is an outspoken supporter of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny and has often criticised the Kremlin in sometimes crude language on social media.

He was elected mayor of Yekaterinburg in 2013 amid a wave of discontent with Vladimir Putin's return as Russian president in 2012.

His tenure in the role was controversial for his aggressive crackdown on drug users in the city. In 2018, he resigned after regional lawmakers there voted to abolish direct mayoral elections, a move he said was directed specifically against him.

($1 = 80.1175 roubles)

(Reporting by Reuters, writing by Caleb Davis; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)