Putin Signs 'Foreign Agents' Law That Threatens Website Closures

The law which will come into force on July 1 next year has been met with resistance by some electronics retailers

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a controversial law under which independent journalists and bloggers can be declared "foreign agents".

The vaguely worded law would apply to Russians and foreigners who work with media declared foreign agents or distribute their content and receive money from overseas, potentially exposing journalists, their sources, or even those who share material on social networks to foreign agent status.

The Kremlin passed the original foreign agent law in 2012, following the largest anti-government protests since Putin came to power.

The sail has been criticized by many in Russian Federation for proscribing freedom of expression in the nation even extra and allowing the authorities to crack down on dissent.

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The label will be applied to individuals who collaborate with foreign media outlets and receive financial or other material support from them. An worker of, say, the human rights group Memorial, or just the recipient of a relative's wire transfers from overseas, has exclusively to put up on Fb a hyperlink to a Radio Liberty story for the legislation to use.

It's clear from his remark that the Russian legislation is a response to the sudden prominence of foreign-agent registration, a beforehand obscure requirement greatest recognized to skilled lobbyists, within the Donald Trump-Russia investigations of particular counsel Robert Mueller.

Russian opposition politician Alexi Navalny's organisation has been branded a foreign agent, as has US-financed media outlet Radio Liberty/Radio Free Europe and Voice of America.

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