The purpose of a new law that Russia is introducing is to try to silence me and others who criticise it for the annexation of Crimea. Further proof that Russia has become a totalitarian power. Now they are trying to extend their totalitarian rule to people living in other countries.
By law, Russia will require foreign nationals who speak about Crimea in a manner not first authorised by the FSB to be extradited to Russia to be punished.
In this law, there is specific negative publicity about Russia’s annexation of the Crimean peninsula to be stopped. Stopped by uncertainty and fear among the thousands critical of the annexation and the violation of key human rights in Crimea in the aftermath.
We can only wait for the next law from the Kremlin which will almost certainly include all negativity among foreign nationals with anything to do with Russia.
Refusal of entry
Possibly the biggest consequence will be that many people will be refused entry to Russia. Reason, they have spoken out against Russia’s occupation of another country’s territories. Of course, hardly any country that respects freedom of expression will hand over the many thousands that Russia will demand.
It has been many years since I have been to Russia and travelling there is out of the question for me. I simply don’t leave money in a country that I believe is violating key human rights. To be honest, if I had applied, I’m pretty sure I would have been rejected.
In the unlikely event that I am arrested and sent to a Russian prison, I will probably meet more of my friends there. We have one thing in common, our mouths cannot be closed even with Russia’s attempts at deterrence.
Crimea belongs to Ukraine, not Russia
The annexation of Crimea will never be forgotten. Our mouths are not closed through the Kremlin’s attempts to abuse power against citizens of other countries. The Crimean Tatars are not forgotten. Neither is the Ukrainian population in Crimea.
Trying to silence me and other people is not acceptable. Putin reminds me of the mischievous boy in class, the one who always made his own rules and threatened to beat him.