The FSB and the Ministry of Internal Affairs may be entitled to make a decision to block the transfers of Russians for ten days in “urgent cases.” Moreover, they will be able to do this without a court decision. The corresponding bill was developed by Rosfinmonitoring.
The document specifies that transfers from cards and electronic wallets will be blocked if transactions are made for the purpose of paying for drugs, financing terrorism and extremist activities. In addition, a decision can be made if there is “sufficient information” about the use of funds for organizing the rally. It is assumed that the decision on blocking will be made by the heads of Rosfinmonitoring, the Ministry of Internal Affairs or the FSB in “urgent cases.”
The explanatory note to the document also notes that the extrajudicial blocking of operations will be valid for only 10 days, “since the suspension of operations entails a restriction of the rights of citizens related to the use and disposal of their funds.” After this period, the blocking can be extended only by a court decision.
– Any expansion of the powers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the FSB, which leads to the defeat of rights and expands the possibilities of extrajudicial actions on the part of the security forces, is not in the interests of society, – I am sure Evgeny Valyaev, political analyst of the Foundation for the Development of Civil Society Institutions “People’s Diplomacy”… – The activities of power structures should be controlled by the society, citizens should have the right to appeal against the actions of security officials. In Russia, the problem is visible that the power structures have a large number of opportunities to persecute citizens, therefore there is a request to limit the number of such instruments, and not to expand them.
The constitutional institution of the separation of powers in Russia is extremely weak, in fact, it does not exist. Even without this, the courts operate in unacceptably close cohesion with the security forces, although they should act as an essential element of the system of checks and balances. In fact, such a reform will eliminate the supposedly unnecessary bureaucratic action – the law enforcement officer will automatically receive what was previously required a court sanction. But the problem lies not in the fact that the law enforcement officer wastes time on unnecessary bureaucracy, but in the fact that this happens automatically, although the courts should thus supervise the actions of the investigative structures.
In recent years, all the reforms that expand the extrajudicial capabilities of the siloviki, Roskomnadzor and Rosfinmonitoring look opaque. Because, apart from the fight against drugs, which society generally approves, the financing of terrorism and the fight against extremism are no longer unambiguous formulations due to the growing number of political cases. The concepts of extremism and terrorism in Russia are very vague, therefore civil society is skeptical about the trend when law enforcement agencies have new tools to put pressure on dissent. The vague and imprecise interpretation of extremism and terrorism allows for many interpretations used by law enforcement officers.
Today, the financing of terrorism, in their understanding, is no longer the financing of underground groups that are ready to fight against the authorities with weapons in their hands and by committing terrorist acts. Extremist activity is not the activity of such underground armed groups, but the activity of independent and opposition politicians and journalists. In such a new reality, the security forces, who will have the right to pre-trial blocking of accounts, will use it to prosecute political activists – such a problem is visible even with the naked eye. We get another rubber standard, which will be used to the place and out of place. The siloviki will have the opportunity to arbitrarily punish citizens they dislike, who have not even done anything at all, it will be enough to “suspect”.
The disproportionate reaction of the authorities to harmless and insignificant offenses or, in general, to the legitimate actions of citizens creates an unfavorable atmosphere. It is extremely unprofitable for the country that the security forces have very broad powers, so that they are not controlled by anyone or anything. As a result, this negatively affects the investment climate, as the number of abuses in economic and political affairs is growing. Power structures need public control – we need a reform that would make the work of power structures more transparent and accountable to society.
– The measure is understandable, it keeps abreast of recent repressive measures aimed at reducing the political activity of citizens, – I am convinced editor-in-chief of FORUM. Moscow time Anatoly Baranov… – Up to the threat of losing all savings for helping any undesirable organization or person. For example, you send one hundred rubles to a prison stall conditional Navalny, and he has a sign above the bunk – a terrorist. Everyone, you are financing a terrorist …
“SP”: – About drugs, terrorism, extremism
– We have a lot of recent laws that amend the constitution. And the constitution itself has been revised. Remember, Pushkin’s “we are wild, we have no laws” …
“SP”: – Out-of-court blocking of transactions will be valid only for 10 days. Why 10 days?
– In 10 days you can do a lot, for example, open a case, arrest and block accounts already in court, as part of interim measures. And you won’t be able to dispute anything in 10 days.
“SP”: – What are the real levers and against whom will the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the FSB give it? Well, they will block someone for 10 days, so what? What kind of abuse can there be?
– This deprives the suspect of money at the most difficult moment, when, for example, he can go somewhere. Or pay a lawyer – without a lawyer how to defend yourself? Well, people will simply become afraid to even manage their own money. In general, run into cash, citizens … The next step is to live without a registration, use a SIM card in someone else’s name … In general, like a spy, but in your home country.
“SP”: – Do you think this law will be adopted? What will be the public reaction?
– The new composition of the Duma can even adopt the laws of Hammurabi. And they don’t care about the public. After all, they understand that they were elected not because of, but in spite of public opinion.
“SP”: – Obviously strengthening the police state … Is there a feeling that the state is tightening the screws? What are they afraid of? And what can this lead to?
– Yes, what a feeling there … Pure “37th light”. Only then there were acquittals, but now they are not. I have a feeling that everyone needs to prepare to settle in the regions of the Far North. And we also thought where Shoigu 5 million new residents for new million-plus cities in Siberia will find …
– Over the past year, we have seen the strengthening of the police state in our country, – notes Secretary of the Moscow City Committee of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation for elections Nikolay Volkov… – The right of law enforcement agencies to block money transfers is a natural increase in this trend.
The document does not hide that one of the goals is to suppress the financing of rallies and protest actions. Surely, the same measure during the elections will be used to disrupt the work of the campaign headquarters of “unwanted” candidates. In practice, most political forces use financing of the processes accompanying elections, not only from the electoral account. Actually, the trend is the same as in the Russian economy as a whole, when only part of the money is circulating in the legal sector. Moreover, if the opposition forces have small sums, something like compensation for the work of observers, then the headquarters of the ruling party have bribery of voters, and payment for “carousel” (multiple voters), and bonuses for janitors for the destruction of opponents’ agitation.
It is very bad that the draft law does not stipulate in which cases the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the FSB should block money transfers. A situation is possible when a huge black flow of money for campaigns of some parties will not be stopped, and unwanted candidates will be blocked from attempts by the headquarters to compensate their employees for taxi fares or phone payments for all contracts and electoral accounts.
“SP”: – How dangerous is a transfer delay of 10 days?
– During the election campaign, a lot is decided in 10 days. Well-organized headquarters will not be much in the way. The really important spending, the printing of campaigning, the payment for the work of employees, should be carried out from the electoral account. A delay of 10 days with unscheduled compensation for a taxi will not be critical.
But the problem is that it is impossible to conduct a full-fledged campaign and increase the recognition of a candidate within 3 months of an official campaign. Therefore, the stars of cinema, sports, music have a great advantage in the elections, and they, as a rule, are in the ranks of the ruling party, and the candidates are moneybags.
An ordinary candidate without the support of oligarchs or United Russia can win the campaign only if he starts it much earlier than the official start. It is for such early campaigns of “people’s candidates” who have collected a small amount in advance and are starting to spend it on leaflets and so on before the elections are announced, and the security forces may be hit. It is very difficult to legalize leaflets before the elections are announced. Today, the practice is such that any leaflet criticizing local or central authorities, a newspaper that raises problems, can be called dangerous, and its payment at the printing house can be suppressed. I am afraid that this law is being adopted for such cases. Unfortunately, there is every chance that it will be adopted.