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Duma gives first nod to ban on Nazi rehabilitation
Category: WORLD-NEWS
Tags: History Human rights Law Politics Russia

Duma gives first nod to ban on Nazi rehabilitation

Participants in the Russian March rally held to mark up the National Unity Day in Moscow\s Lyublino district. (RIA Novosti/Iliya Pitalev)

Participants in the Russian March rally held to mark up the National Unity Day in Moscow\s Lyublino district. (RIA Novosti/Iliya Pitalev)

The Russian Lower House has passed the first reading of a bill introducing prison sentences for the public justification of Nazism. The sponsors would like to sign it into law before May 9 – the anniversary of Russia’s victory in WWII.

The bill was approved unanimously on Friday.

Our country has not simply defended itself. We have defended the whole world from Nazism. Our people suffered the greatest casualties in this war. For us, the rehabilitation of Nazism will always be a crime against our country and our people. Rehabilitation of Nazism is not only a shot fired at the past and mocking millions of victims. It is also a shot fired at the future, an instigation for new crimes against peace and security,”one of the main sponsors of the bill, the head of the Lower House Committee for Security Irina Yarovaya said as she presented the bill to MPs.

Earlier, Yarovaya has told the press that the urge for such a law is especially evident today in times of the violent political crisis in Ukraine launched and supported by radicals and neo-Nazis. “Ukraine is a living witness of what can be the result of such a policy, when Nazism is standing tall and manifests itself not only through propaganda but through actual crimes,” the Interfax news agency quoted the lawmaker as saying.

Once passed the bill would make it illegal to publicly deny the Nuremberg Tribunal verdict and the anti-Hitler coalition’s effort to defend international peace and security during the Second World War. The ban is also extended to knowingly spreading false reports about the crimes of anti-Nazi armies during the war and the fabrication of proof of such crimes.

Those convicted face fines of up to 300,000 rubles (about $8300) or prison terms of up to 3 years. The use of public office or the media raises the maximum punishment to 500,000 roubles in fines or up to 5 years behind bars with a ban from certain posts and professions for another 3 years.

The bill was initially drafted several years ago by majority United Russia caucus. The initial version drew criticism from professional lawyers over the preciseness of various legal formulas and was recalled. The new draft was submitted for public discussion in Summer 2014 and has already received an approval from the Supreme Court and support from all four parliamentary parties.

The new bill, however, has drawn criticism from OSCE's Representative on Freedom of the Media, who said that the narrow application of such a law might lead to its abuse and suppress political and critical speech on issues of history. Russia’s Foreign Ministry blasted this statement as intervention into another nation’s legislative process and the bill’s sponsors said that many foreign nations had similar legislation protecting the historical truth as stated by the Nuremberg Tribunal.


‘Cinderella law’: Parents in Britain to be jailed for not loving children?
Category: WORLD-NEWS
Tags: Children Law Psychology UK Violence

‘Cinderella law’: Parents in Britain to be jailed for not loving children?

Reuters/Mansi Thapliyal

 For the first time in history, the UK is planning to introduce the so-called “Cinderella law”, which will jail parents failing to show love to children for up to 10 years in prison, putting it alongside physical or sexual abuse, local media reported.

The UK government is planning to introduce changes to child neglect laws, which will make “emotional cruelty” a crime for the first time, according to Daily Telegraph report. The law will protect children’s emotional, social and behavioral well-being. 

The offence will include deliberately ignoring a child, not showing them any love over prolonged periods, forcing degrading punishments or to witness domestic violence, and making them a scapegoat. 

The maximum sentence that parents neglecting children could face under the law will be 10 years. 

The changes are due to be introduced in Parliament within the framework of the Queen’s Speech in early June. 

A Ministry of Justice spokesman came close to confirming the report to the Daily Telegraph. 

“The Government believes protecting children from harm is fundamental and that child cruelty is an abhorrent crime which should be punished,” he said. “Every child should be able to grow up in a safe environment. We are considering ways the law can support this.” 

This follows a 3-year campaign by the charity, Action for Children, which hails the government’s support as a “monumental step” forward. 

The law on child cruelty in Britain has remained unchanged for nearly 81 years, the charity stated. It is still based on the 1868 Poor Law (Amendment) Act.

If adopted it will update the current laws in England and Wales, which state that adults responsible for a child can be prosecuted if they have deliberately assaulted, abandoned or exposed a child to suffering, or injury to their health. 

The changes have been “long overdue”, said Robert Buckland, a Conservative MP and part-time judge, campaigning on the issue. 

“Not too many years after the Brothers Grimm popularized the story of Cinderella, the offence of child neglect was introduced,” he noted, writing in the Daily Telegraph. 

“Our criminal law has never reflected the full range of emotional suffering experienced by children who are abused by their parents or carers. The sad truth is that, until now, the wicked stepmother would have got away scot-free. 

“We need a clear, concise and workable definition of child maltreatment — an alternative code that reflects the range of harm done to children and which provides appropriate legal mechanisms to tackle some of the worst cases. 

“Emotional neglect must be outlawed, the term 'willful’ should be replaced and the criminal law should be brought into line with its civil counterpart.” 

In Britain, as many as 1.5 million children are believed to suffer from neglect, according to local media. Intervention by social workers is allowed when abuse is classed as emotional neglect. However, the new law will allow police to intervene in cases of physical or sexual abuse. 

“Much is still to be done and we have not seen the details yet,” said the charity in a statement on it’s website. 

“When we do we must, of course, make sure that the new law does not criminalize vulnerable parents, but today I think we should celebrate a huge legal and cultural step forward.”



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