Russia’s Draconian ‘Anti-Maidan Law’ Claims Its First Victim

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William Echols 

The noose is tightening around Russia’s increasingly shrinking civic space. On Monday, activist Ildar Dadin was sentenced to three years in prison by a Moscow court for taking part in multiple, unsanctioned protests. He is the first victim of a repressive 2014 law that criminalizes the act of violating public assembly rules more than twice within a 180-day period.

As Amnesty International notes, a single violation of the so-called ‘anti-Maidan law’ is now punishable by a fine or up to 15 days in jail. Three strikes and a five-year prison sentence might be on the table. In Dadin’s case, the prosecutor had asked for two years, a sentence which the judge (or whoever ultimately handed down the verdict), found too lenient.

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Ironically, at the time of the bill’s signing, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the authorities would not fight “radicalism” in the country by “tightening the screws.” And yet, Dadin certainly appears to have been put in a vice…

Read the full article at Russia! Magazine 

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