facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Medvedev defends NGO registration law

Dec. 7, 2012 at 11:08 AM   |   Comments

MOSCOW, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- Russia's prime minister asked what was wrong with the word "agent" as he defended a law stating some non-government organizations register as "foreign agents."

"What's wrong with the word 'agent?'" Dmitry Medvedev asked Friday during a television interview when asked if the word "agent" was synonymous with "spy." "Agent means 'representative,' and that's all."

"Anything else is just a coincidence," RIA Novosti quoted him as saying.

In November, a new law took effect requiring NGOs receiving funding from other countries to register as foreign agents. Critics say the law, along with another one signed recently by President Vladimir Putin that expands the definition of treason, is part of a crackdown on dissidents pushing for legal reform and respect for human rights.

"The law only concerns those NGOs that engage in politics and receive money from foreign governments," Medvedev said Friday. "Imagine if an NGO in the U.S. dealing with politics received money from the Russian federal budget. There would be an outcry."

Russian human rights organizations have reacted angrily to the new law, which went into effect in November, RIA Novosti said.

Russia's oldest rights organization, the Moscow Helsinki Group, has said it would close rather than comply with the law. Other rights groups have said they would not register.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Syrian Al Qaida group executes Lebanese soldier Syrian Al Qaida group executes Lebanese soldier
2
Kentucky firefighter injured in ice bucket challenge dies Kentucky firefighter injured in ice bucket challenge dies
3
White House intruder had a knife White House intruder had a knife
4
Sister shoots and kills brother to protect father Sister shoots and kills brother to protect father
5
New York buses will feature anti-Islam ads depicting James Foley New York buses will feature anti-Islam ads depicting James Foley
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback