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Russian government supports bill to ban maps that ‘dispute Russia’s territorial integrity’

Source: TASS

The Russian government gave a positive response to a piece of legislation that equates maps “disputing the territorial integrity of the Russian Federation” with extremist materials, reports news agency TASS, citing a document to which the agency has access.

The bill proposes labeling as extremist any maps or images which do now show Crimea, the Kuril Islands, and other territories (most likely the other annexed regions of Ukraine) as subjects of the Russian Federation.

According to TASS, the government supported the bill on the condition that it be revised. Authorities wanted to know whether the bill will also ban maps which appeared before the “acceptance” of the aforementioned territories into the Russian Federation.

In December 2022, the State Duma passed, in a first reading, a package of bills that would allow the government to dole out fines for distributing maps “that dispute the territorial integrity of Ukraine.” Citizens face fines of 1,000 to 3,000 rubles ($15-$40 USD), and officials between 2,000 and 5,000 rubles (up to around $70 USD). For organizations, the fines total 100,000 to a million rubles (around $1,380 to $13,800 USD).

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