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Senator says over 500 destructive sects active in Russia

February 13, 2017, 19:37 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, February 13. /TASS/. Over 500 destructive sects are active in Russia and the country’s upper house will set up a working group led by Deputy Head of the Federation Council Committee for Constitutional Legislation and State Development Yelena Mizulina to fight them, the senator’s press office reported on Monday.

"According to available expert estimates, about 500 destructive sects are active in Russia today," the senator said at the committee’s session.

The situation gets more complicated as "the Russian legislation lacks such a notion as a ‘sect," all the more so ‘a destructive sect,’" Mizulina said.

"Modern sects are masked as various organizations holding psychological training sessions, workshops on the development of leader’s qualities and some so-called experts tell how to survive, if doomsday comes or, for example, how to be teleported to other planets and, desirably, with one’s property," she added.

The senator cited the Russian Justice Ministry’s data suggesting that 52 sectarian organizations active in 24 regions of Russia were banned and liquidated in the country pursuant to judicial decisions in 2015-2016.

"Such a large-scale spread of sectarian organizations clearly shows that something is wrong in the existing legislation," the senator said.

The session of the Federation Council Committee for Constitutional Legislation made a decision on Monday to set up a working group led by Mizulina to fight sects.

The working group will also comprise members of the Federation Council Committees for Defense and Social Policy.

The group will deal with improving the legislation in the sphere of protecting citizens from fraudulent actions of destructive sects.

The working group’s head emphasized that "while declaring a war on destructive, totalitarian sects, no attacks on traditional religious organizations must be allowed."

"In their person, we’ll get strong allies in the struggle against fraudsters," Mizulina said.

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