Tags: Russia | putin | signs | law | foreign | groups

Putin Signs Law Allowing Prosecutor Clampdown on Foreign Groups

Sunday, 24 May 2015 07:47 AM

President Vladimir Putin signed legislation allowing prosecutors to deem foreign or global non-government organizations as “undesirable” in Russia.

The prosecutor-general may assign the label to international NGOs that “threaten Russia’s constitutional order, defense potential or security,” according to the law signed last night. Such organizations lose rights to publish media materials, organize rallies and use local bank accounts.

The move is the latest effort by Putin to tighten control over opposition and media, stifling debate about the government’s stewardship of the economy and its decision more than a year ago to annex the Crimean peninsula from the Ukraine. Britain said Putin was silencing voices who might criticize Putin or work to protect human rights.

“The new law will directly affect the ability of international organizations to work, promote and protect human rights in Russia and is clearly aimed at undermining the work of Russian civil society,” David Lidington, the Europe minister in the U.K. Foreign Office, said in a statement from London. “NGOs make a vital contribution to society.”

The legislation also introduces punishment including as much as 500,000 rubles ($10,000) fines and up to six years in prison for running such NGOs in Russia.

A year ago, Putin ordered popular bloggers to register with local communications watchdog and be liable for their content. In October, another Putin’s law required cutting foreign ownership in Russian media to 20 percent by 2016.

In February 2014, before the Crimean incident, another law came in force that allowed the government to block certain Internet content without a court decision.


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President Vladimir Putin signed legislation allowing prosecutors to deem foreign or global non-government organizations as "undesirable" in Russia.The prosecutor-general may assign the label to international NGOs that "threaten Russia's constitutional order, defense...
putin, signs, law, foreign, groups
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2015-47-24
Sunday, 24 May 2015 07:47 AM
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