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5 Mar, 2022 15:32

Putin wants to punish foreigners over human rights abuses

The new move is an extension to a law that previously only applied to Americans
Putin wants to punish foreigners over human rights abuses

President Vladimir Putin has signed a law that will allow Russia to impose sanctions on foreigners found guilty of violating its citizens’ human rights.

On Friday, Putin inked an order that will allow authorities to impose embargoes against individuals from any country for committing offenses against Russian citizens.

“The law extends the current legislative measures to foreign nationals and stateless persons who are placed on corresponding lists by the Russian Foreign Ministry,” Chairman of the Federation Council Committee on Constitutional Legislation and State Building Andrey Klishas said.

The new legislation has expanded a 2012 law which permits sanctions on US citizens for infringing Russian citizens’ freedoms and human rights to all foreign nationals, as well as stateless individuals.

Possible punitive measures include a ban on entering Russia, a freeze of financial and other assets, restrictions on investment and business deals, and a suspension from boards of directors of Russian companies.

On Friday, the Russian parliament passed a law to punish citizens spreading “disinformation” about the country’s armed forces. An offender could spend up to 15 years behind bars for intentionally spreading “fake” information that causes significant damage to national security.

Moscow launched its military incursion in Ukraine on February 24 following appeals from the leaders of the breakaway Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics for help in combating what they claimed was a spike in aggression from Ukraine’s armed forces.