Fines for insulting Russian national football team if new bill becomes law

Fines for insulting Russian national football team if new bill becomes law
Russian MPs have prepared a bill introducing fines for public statements insulting the players or coach of the Russian national football team, saying that moral climate was an important condition for sports victories.

The bill has been prepared by a group of lawmakers, headed by MP Vitaly Milonov of the majority party United Russia. He is best-known as the principal sponsor of the bill which bans promotion of non-traditional sexual relations to minors, dubbed by international mass media as the “Russian gay propaganda ban.”

Milonov said in comments with RBC that the idea, to develop a law that would protect Russian footballers from insults, came to him only recently but next week he wanted to finish a draft and send it to parliamentary experts for evaluation. The bill’s concept orders fines up to 10,000 rubles (about $160) for “verbally tormenting” the athletes.

He also gave a more detailed explanation of his position in an interview with Komsomolskaya Pravda. “Our players have not even made it to the pitch and already they have been smeared with dirt. And there is no need for every one of them to go to police and register a complaint.

“They represent our state and the scoundrels who insult them insult the whole nation. We will fine them 10 thousand rubles, in this case they will not have enough money left to buy beer and crisps,” the newspaper quoted the lawmaker as saying.

“Our players are ours, regardless of how good they are. And here some idiots make fun of them and spoil their pre-game moods. If our footballers lose we should blame those who insulted our boys,” Milonov added.

The 2018 World Cup began on Thursday in Moscow when Russia beat Saudi Arabia 5-0 in the first game of the tournament.

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