New Government Proposal For NGO Raids
Published: June 5, 2013 (Issue # 1762)
MOSCOW— The government’s legislative commission has approved a draft amendment giving the authorities additional grounds on which to carry out unscheduled inspections on NGOs that violate Russian law, the Justice Ministry said Tuesday.
According to the bill, which the government will consider at a later date, checks can be undertaken if violations of the law are not corrected within time limits set by the authorities or if signs of extremism within an organization are reported.
NGOs may also be inspected at the request of the President, government officials or prosecutors.
A controversial law obliging NGOs that receive financial support from abroad and are involved in political activity to register as “foreign agents” was signed by President Vladimir Putin in July 2012. However, NGOs have resisted the law.
Since March, hundreds of non-governmental organizations have been raided, sparking criticism from international and Russian human rights organizations who say the law is another step taken by the Kremlin to suppress opposition to Putin’s rule.