RUSSIAN LAWMAKERS VOTE TO PUNISH MEDIA FOR FAKE NEWS

Written by on March 6, 2019

Reports say Russian officials will be able to fine or block online media outlets for publishing news they deem fake, under a law approved by lawmakers today.

Russia’s lower house of parliament, which is overwhelmingly dominated by the pro-Kremlin United Russia party, voted in favour of the bill in the key second of three readings.

However, Rights groups say the move amounts to censorship as the law would allow prosecutors to decide what amounts to fake news and gives a media watchdog the power to demand an outlet delete the information.

Meanwhile, Websites that fail to comply would be blocked in addition to fines that could reach 1.5 million rubles (over $22,700) if the infraction leads to grave consequences like death or rioting.


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