JRL NEWSWATCH: “In Russia, critiquing the Ukraine war could land you in prison” – Christian Science Monitor

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“The Kremlin’s crackdown on dissent has gone from being focused on particular targets to broadly criminalizing any criticism of the government or its war – and it is casting a pall over Russian society.”

“… Mikhail Lobanov, a local political activist in the Moscow suburb of Ramenki, put a little sign on his balcony that said ‘No War.’ … [O]ne day police arrived at his door to arrest him. [] Lobanov, a candidate for the Communist Party in last year’s municipal elections, … now … finds himself among … nearly 4,000 prosecutions under a pair of new laws that make it punishable to spread … ‘fake news’ about Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, or to make any statement … authorities deem to ‘defame’ Russia’s army or officials. A growing number of cases involve people speaking informally in workplaces, classrooms, social media, and even … church. The effect is to put people on their guard, even in private settings, creating an atmosphere of pervasive fear that has not been widely felt in Russia since Soviet times. …”

Click here for: “In Russia, critiquing the Ukraine war could land you in prison; The Kremlin’s crackdown on dissent has gone from being focused on particular targets to broadly criminalizing any criticism of the government or its war – and it is casting a pall over Russian society.” – Christian Science Monitor/ Fred Weir