The Russian Federation Council has approved amendments to the law on fighting terrorism
The Federation Council (the upper house of the Russian Federation parliament) has given the President of Russia the right to use armed forces and the security service abroad in order to combat terrorism. Before this, the relevant amendments were made by the State Duma. According to the official version, the decision was dictated by the murder of Russian diplomats in Iraq.
Unlike the State Duma where discussion of all the amendments to Russian legislation relating to the fight against terrorism took half the day, in the Federation Council the debate was extremely short. In effect only the head of the profile committee, the chair of the committee on security and defence, Viktor Ozerov spoke, saying that despite the fact that the law sets down permission from the President to use the security services abroad, the operations will nonetheless be secret. “We are not planning to send in forces to this or that state in order to prevent international terrorist activities. These operations will be carried out secretly so that those whom we are looking for and want to apprehend, cannot make use of a leak of information. The President of the Russian Federation has unequivocally stated that all of these measures will be undertaken in strict compliance with the norms of international law and Russian legislation.”
In this draft law, as well as the right of the President to give orders to deploy the security service abroad, there is a lot more that is interesting, for example, the restoration in the Russian legislative system of confiscation of property. Despite the fact that the Russian legislators claim that this measure was introduced in compliance with the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism, confiscation of property is introduced not only for crimes connected with terrorism, but in general for many serious crimes. Furthermore, the law introduces yet one more rather amusing measure, or at least one which many have treated with irony. For those voluntary helpers of the security service who provide information to the so-called competent bodies, the fee that they receive for such information shall be free of tax.