Proposed Russian legislation could damage civil society, rights experts warn

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Maina Kiai

A group of United Nations independent experts on Thursday warned that a draft law being considered by Russia could adversely impact civil society.

Gerry Adams has the story.

“ The Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, Maina Kiai, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, Margaret Sekaggya and the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of opinion and expression, Frank La Rue, urged Russia not to adopt the legislation.

It is currently being discussed in the State Duma, according to the UN Human Rights Office.

The proposed legislation says non-commercial organizations (NCOs) wishing to engage in "political activities" will have to register as organizations "performing the functions of foreign agents" before receiving foreign funding.

Special Rapporteur Margaret Sekaggya said she was "gravely concerned that putting human rights defenders under such scrutiny will deter them from performing their important work."

Duration: 56″

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