The Russian Duma has passed a law prescribing draconian sentences for “knowingly spreading fake news” about Russian military operations, categorized according to the severity and consequences of such actions, RIA Novosti reported.
Under the new law, for the crime of “knowingly spreading fake information about the armed forces of the Russian Federation under the guise of credible messages”, the minimum fine is from 700,000 to 1.5 million rubles (with the significant fall of the Russian currency one ruble = 0.0083 Euros) up to three years in prison depending on the gravity of the offence.
For spreading fake information using the official position of a group of individuals or a group of individuals with the artificial creation of evidence for the prosecution, the sentence will be from 5 to 10 years in prison. If such fake information intentionally caused severe consequences, the law provides for imprisonment of 10 to 15 years.
The State Duma has also introduced misdemeanor liability for discrediting the armed forces of the Russian Federation. The law provides for the introduction of liability for public calls to prevent the use of the armed forces of the Russian Federation. If these actions do not contain a criminal offence, then the fine for citizens will be from 30 thousand to 50 thousand rubles, for officials – from 100 thousand to 200 thousand rubles, for legal entities – from 300 thousand to 500 thousand rubles.
Among the measures taken by the Russian Federation is the decision of Roskomnadozor, the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Communications, according to which from today access to the website of Radio Liberty is restricted, which in Russia is listed as a foreign media agent, as well as on the BBC website.
According to Russian agencies, access to these two world services is restricted by Russian regulations blocking sites containing calls for riots, extremism and participation in illegal mass actions.
Before this, access to Medusa online digital media was restricted.