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Putin signs law that raises penalties for disobeying law enforcement and makes it harder to finance demonstrations

Protesting in Russia just got a bit riskier. On Wednesday, President Putin signed legislation that raises the penalties for disobeying police officers, including at public assemblies, and for violating new rules on financing mass demonstrations. 

The new law hikes the maximum fine for insubordination to 4,000 rubles ($55) and introduces up to 120 hours of community service. Perpetrators also face up to 15 days in jail, while repeat offenders can be locked up for 30 days and fined as much as 20,000 rubles ($275) or sentenced to 100-200 hours of community service.

With the president’s signature, it’s now illegal to donate money anonymously to support the organization of mass demonstrations, and any funds submitted this way must be surrendered to the state. Failure to comply with these new requirements can result in fines as high as 20,000 rubles or 40 hours of community service. Legal entities that violate the new law face fines 10 times as high. Individuals who “lack the right” to donate money for the organization of public assemblies but do so anyway face fines as high as 15,000 rubles ($200). A legal entity that does the same could be fined up to 100,000 rubles ($1,360).

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