MOSCOW, March 18. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law criminalizing the slander of any participants in the special military operation, including volunteers. The document was published on the government’s website containing legal information on Saturday.
Russia’s Criminal Code earlier established liability only for public actions aimed at discrediting the use of the Russian Armed Forces overseas. However, the public discrediting of all participants in the special military operation, including volunteer units, organizations and individuals facilitating the Russian Armed Forces’ missions, will now be punishable under the law, with the maximum penalty increased from five to seven years in prison.
In addition, spreading fake news about volunteers participating in the special operation will be punishable with 15 years in prison.
Besides, Putin also signed a law introducing administrative liability, with fines of up to 500,000 rubles ($6,500), for the slander of volunteers participating in the special military operation.
The State Duma (the lower parliament) explained earlier that those who committed the same crime within one year after receiving an administrative punishment would face criminal liability.