MOSCOW, December 13 – RAPSI. President Vladimir Putin has expressed his support of the idea to ban the mentioning of suspects' and convicts' ethnicity in the media, with violations of this leading to the possible closure of the media outlet in question.

The Moscow City Duma's speaker Vladimir Platonov asked Putin to support this legislative initiative on prohibiting the mentioning of ethnicity and religious beliefs of criminals at the meeting of the Council of Legislators on Thursday.

Platonov said that media services should even be closed for this.

“I agree with you that a criminal has no ethnicity… I do not want to interfere, but if the law comes to me, I will of course support it,” Putin said.

He also stressed the necessity to abide by the main principle – the inevitability and the justice of the punishment for the committed crime, regardless of criminal’s ethnic background

The media had reported previously that it was United Russia's party member Shamsail Saraliyev who had proposed the idea of banning the media from stating criminals’ ethnicity.

However, Gadzhimet Safaraliyev, chairman of the State Duma Committee for Nationality Affairs, said that this idea had not yet been developed into a bill or discussed at the State Duma.