MOSCOW (AP) — An organization that monitors human rights in the Russian military and provides legal support for conscripts said Wednesday it is ending its work because of new restrictions that could lead to its being designated a foreign agent.
The announcement by the Soldiers’ Mothers of St. Petersburg follows an order by the Federal Security Service declaring that anyone who gathers information on the military that then is provided to foreign government and organizations could be labeled a foreign agent even if the information is not considered a state secret.
The designation requires additional financial reporting and that an organization must identify itself as a foreign agent in publications, which could undermine its credibility because of the term’s pejorative connotations.
The law initially applied to political organizations receiving foreign funding but gradually has been expanded to apply to news media.
The Associated Press