Return To Soviet-Era, Russia To Prosecute ‘Thought Crimes’
Russia gives powers to FSB to prosecute ‘thought crime’
29 Jul 2010
The bill, criticised by rights groups, would allow the Federal Security Service (FSB) to issue official warnings to individuals whose actions are deemed to be creating the conditions for crime.
Rights groups say the bill would essentially put the special service above the law and harks back to Soviet times when the much-feared FSB predecessor KGB used warnings to persecute dissidents.
The bill had already sailed through the lower and upper houses of parliament and was today signed into law by the Russian President, Dmitry Medvedev.
The opposition says the FSB security service is already extremely powerful and empowering it further would contravene Mr Medvedev’s pledge to liberalise Russia.