MOSCOW, July 10 - RAPSI. Businessmen's rights commissioner Boris Titov will only deal with the case against former YUKOS CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky if he submits a formal request, said Titov in an interview carried in the Kommersant daily on Tuesday.

Appointed the businessmen's ombudsman on June 22, Titov intends to propose that President Vladimir Putin should release 13,000 convicts sentenced for economic crimes, including Khodorkovsky, who has been serving his term since 2003.

The business ombudsman has yet to examine the Khodorkovsky case.

"If Khodorkovsky asks me to review his case, we will definitely do so," he said. However, his case will not be handled without his request, he added.

The YUKOS case has been one of the most high profile in Russia in recent years. In the early 2000s, when YUKOS was the country's largest oil company, its executives were charged with economic crimes. YUKOS later went bankrupt and its assets were transferred to Rosneft. Many in the West believe the case was politically motivated, though Moscow denies these allegations.

In late 2010, the court sentenced Khodorkovsky and his partner Platon Lebedev to 14 years in prison. They were expected to be released in 2017, taking into account the time they had already served for their previous convictions from their first trial in 2005. However, later the sentence was contested and the court shortened their prison term by one year.