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President Vladimir Putin on Saturday vowed to punish the killers of Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov as Russian opposition figures denounced what they called a "political murder" and Western leaders called for a full probe. The brazen assassination is the latest in a string of murders of opposition figures in Putin's 15 years in power and recalls the shooting of anti-Kremlin reporter Anna Politkovskaya, gunned down on Putin's birthday in October 2006. Allies of Nemtsov, a longtime anti-corruption crusader who served as deputy premier under Boris Yeltsin, linked his death to his political activities. Hours before the killing, he went on air to urge Russians to join an opposition rally Sunday against the Kremlin stance in Ukraine.