Bloggers may be subjected to “foreign agents” media law – MP
MOSCOW, December 20 (RAPSI) – Vice-speaker of Russia’s State Duma Petr Tolstoy has told journalists that law on media classified as “foreign agents” does not affect bloggers as a whole except for those, who are financed from abroad and are registered as media.
On Tuesday, a group of MPs submitted a bill to the State Duma, obligating media registered as “foreign agent” to establish a legal entity in Russia in order to distribute their content.
On December 5, Russia’s Ministry of Justice designated nine media outlets, including Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) as “foreign agents”.
According to the press-service of the Ministry, other media included in the list are Current Time TV, Tatar-Bashkir service of RFE/RL and several projects of Radio Liberty including Factograf, Sibir.Realii, IdeLRealia, Kavkaz.Realii, and Krym.Realii.
Earlier, the Ministry has forwarded warnings of possible labeling as foreign agents to these outlets.
On December 4, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the Ministry of Justice to maintain registry of foreign media designated as “foreign agents”.
On November 25, the President signed a bill on “foreign agent” label for foreign media into law.
Decisions regarding registration of media as “foreign agents” are to be made by the Ministry of Justice. The document is also to establish regulations such as what markers are going to be used for this kind of media or whether there is a need for a special registry in this case.
The Russian law adopted in November 2012 requires that all NGOs engaged in political activity and receiving foreign funding register as “foreign agents”.