Friday, 25 May 2012

Sounds like another form of anti-democratic repression

President Vladimir Putin, the former KGB officer, wishes to shield the Russian people from radical actions. He  apparently supports a very controversial bill which would significantly increase fines for those involved in "unsanctioned protests".

In December 2011 there were mass street protests, by opponents of the re-elected President Putin, which were certainly unsanctioned, in response to perceived election fraud.

It is now feared that the bill, which has gained lower house approval, will prevent and put pressure on the protesters and public opponents who wish to take to the streets to express their grievances.  Fines for unsanctioned protests could be used to curtail free speech, opposition rallies, spontaneous responses to injustice, and democratic practices.  The heavy fines could be a weapon against democratic and spontaneous protest. Yet President Putin maintains that establishing increased fines for unsanctioned protesters "strengthened democracy".

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