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Return to Stalin’s past impossible for modern Russia, Medvedev said

November 29, 2012, 4:41 UTC+3

Medvedev said Russia’s civil society grows up and becomes more open

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MOSCOW, November 29 (Itar-Tass) — Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Russia’s civil society grows up and becomes more open.

In an interview with the Kommersant he spoke about continuing criticism of the power by the non-parliamentary opposition. “I am not sure what they mean. In order to speak about what happened back in 1937, one should realise the moods of 1937. It is suffice to check the sources to realise that our society today is so different from the society of the 1930s back in the Soviet Union, that nothing of the kind is impossible even to imagine,” Medvedev said.

“The society is developing, it becomes more modern, more open. Becomes, let’s say, a society of a more wellbeing state. Thus are demands to the power. If a country is unwell, people present fewer demands to the power, than they do now. Their task then is simply to survive. The fact that the demand emerged during the elections of 2011 proves our civil society is growing up,” the prime minister said.

Presently, he continued, a part of the society is calling for stricter order and approves Stalin’s repressions. “Most people, who are approving that time, do not have a slightest idea what it was like in reality. It is very easy to admire a tyrant recognising you are not going to be arrested at night, you are not shot without court or investigation, you are not put in prison for a 25-year term,” he said.

Commenting on the recent law on calumny, Medvedev expressed his position: “This article should be decriminalised. It is not necessary to put behind the bars for calumny. Responsibility for it should be different – mostly of property origin. I believe this position acceptable.”

The prime minister does not agree either with the view that addendums to the law on treason may affect scientific and business contacts. “In order to realise whether it is a repressive thing or adjustment of certain legal-technical aspects, or even adjustment of certain disposition elements of the article on treason, it is necessary to have a legal practice. Let us wait for it to happen. If it is a practice of tough repressive character, which expands responsibility limits and its subjects, then, you are right. I hope, this will not happen,” Medvedev said.



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