The Prosecutor General's Office is trying to expand its powers to pre-trial blocking of sites and accounts

    According to the Vedomosti newspaper, at a meeting of the Independent Human Rights Council (HRC), Alexei Zhafyarov, head of the Prosecutor General’s department for monitoring the implementation of legislation on interethnic relations and countering extremist and terrorist activities, made a request to expand the powers of the prosecutor’s office regarding pre-trial blocking of sites extremist orientation.

    “The agitation and propaganda of extremism and terrorism on the Internet has recently been less expressed in the form of an appeal, and more often in the form of propaganda and justification for this kind of activity. But today there are no mechanisms that would allow us to quickly block this information, ”said Zhafyarov.

    Moreover, Vladimir Makarov, deputy head of the main department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs on countering extremism, believes that the powers to evaluate and block such sites should be transferred to prosecutors in the regions. An interdepartmental commission on countering extremism will work on this proposal.

    However, Leonid Levin, the chairman of the State Duma’s Committee on Information Policy, fears that in the regions not all prosecutors have the appropriate level of qualification to make such decisions.

    However, according to Kommersant, the HRC did not approve of these proposals. “Now, even more people are condemned for calls for violence than for violent acts,” said Alexander Verkhovsky, head of the Sova Center.

    “It’s good that we learned about them at the preparation stage, and not when these initiatives were submitted to the State Duma,” said Ilya Shablinsky, a member of the Human Rights Council.

    And another member of the HRC, Kirill Kabanov, proposed not to rush and within three months “to analyze, together with law enforcement agencies, the causes of the rise and growth of extremism, especially religious, and prepare a report to the president.” The Council made such a decision.

    RBC reports that the prosecutor general’s office also asks for authorization to block accounts used to raise funds for extremist activities.

    “This is our joint proposal with Rosfinmonitoring. Our law does not provide for the blocking of bank details. But it makes sense to block the site where the details are printed, if the details themselves cannot be blocked, can the funds be taken and used for illegal purposes? ”Said Denis Markov, deputy head of the information and methodological department of the Prosecutor General’s Office.

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