Putin amends law on sanctioning foreign individuals
Russia is criminalizing many acts carried out by the West to demonize Moscow's operation in Ukraine, which has been accompanied with severe sanctions.
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed Friday a federal law broadening sanctions for violating the rights of Russian citizens to all foreigners and stateless persons, the Kremlin announced.
"The federal law sets out the possibility of applying sanctions... to all foreign nationals and stateless persons, not just US citizens, as the current version of the law envisaged," the statement read.
The law had stipulated the application of sanctions on US citizens who were involved in violations of human rights and freedoms, as well as those who committed such offenses against Russian citizens.
The law put in place an entry ban, seizure of financial and other assets in Russia, prohibition of any transactions with property and investments, and suspension of operations of legal entities under their control.
At the same time, according to the Kremlin, Putin signed a federal law criminalizing the spread of disinformation about the Russian armed forces and their defamation, in addition to any calls for sanctioning Russian entities or individuals.
"The federal law stipulates criminal liability for public dissemination under the guise of reliable reports of knowingly false information on the use of the Russian Armed Forces aiming to protect the interests of Russia and its citizens and maintain international peace and security," the Kremlin statement read.
Effective immediately, the intentional spreading of false information about the Russian Armed Forces, with the disseminator being aware of the fallacy of the information, incurs a fine of some $12,000, correctional labor up to three years, or incarceration for the same period.
For officials or organized groups artificially creating evidence or motivated by hatred or enmity, the penalty is a more severe 5-10 years in jail, while disinformation leading to grave consequences will be punished by imprisonment of 10-15 years.
Calling to hinder the use of Russian troops or discrediting them, the assailant could face a fine, arrest, or incarceration for up to three years.
"In accordance with the Federal Law, criminal liability also arises for calls on a foreign state to implement... restrictive measures manifested in imposing or prolonging political or economic sanctions against Russia," Kremlin added.
Calls for sanctions against Russia may be punished by a fine or a maximum of three years in prison, the statement read.
The Russian act can be seen as a form of retaliation for the West bombarding the federation with sanctions over its military operation in Ukraine.