MOSCOW, July 14. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law which equates defection to the side of an enemy during combat with high treason, according to a document published on the official portal of legal information on Thursday.
Article 275 of Russia’s Criminal Code has been updated with provisions on the liability of a Russian citizen for the participation in an armed conflict or military actions on the territory of a foreign state against the interests of the Russian Federation.
"The defection to the adversary’s side implies the participation of an individual among the forces (troops) of a foreign state, an international or a foreign organization directly opposing the Russian Federation in an armed conflict, military actions or other actions involving armaments and military equipment," the law said.
The maximum punishment for defection amounts to 20 years behind bars.
The same liability is stipulated for providing financial, material and technical assistance, consulting or other aid to a foreign state, an international or a foreign organization or their representatives in the activity directed against Russia’s security.