Saturday, 23 March, 2019


Russians to protest against new 'internet sovereignty' bill

Russians to protest against new ‘internet sovereignty’ bill Thousands of Russians march in protest against new 'internet iron curtain'
Melba Vasquez | 12 March, 2019, 19:45

Thousands of people took to the streets of Moscow and two other cities on Sunday to rally against tighter internet restrictions, in some of the biggest protests in the Russian capital in years. "There are a lot of repressive laws on free speech and other things already", an elderly woman at the protest told DW. The UK for example passed the controversial Investigatory Powers Act, commonly known as the Snoopers' Charter, into law back in 2016.

Advocates say the bill is meant to address concerns that Russian Federation could be cut off if the United States applies a new cybersecurity doctrine in an offensive maneuver.

Proponents say it aims to make what they call the Russian segment of the Internet more independent, and argue that the legislation is needed to guard Russia against potential cyberattacks.

The legislation wants to route Russian web traffic and data through points controlled by the Russian government.

The proposed measure also would create a division in Russia's agency that regulates communications to oversee traffic control and routing.

The second reading is planned in March after which, if passed, the bill will need to be signed by the upper house of the parliament and then by President Vladimir Putin.

Thousands of Russians march in protest against new 'internet iron curtain'

Moscow on Monday, March 11, insisted it was not moving to cut off Russia's internet from the rest of the world, following protests across the country over plans to curb online freedoms.

"If we do nothing it will get worse".

A protester holds a placard reading "Putin lies" during an opposition rally in central Moscow, on March 10, 2019, to demand internet freedom in Russian Federation.

Organisers said more than 15,000 people turned up to the Moscow protest, with smaller events taking place in other cities. While these three protests were officially authorized by local police, the protest in St. Petersburg was held without the consent of authorities.

Russian Federation it should be remembered has already banned the use of messaging app Telegram in the country.

And past year, campaigners took to the streets to protest the media watchdog's attempt to shut down the encrypted messaging service, Telegram.

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