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Press ReleaseHate Crimes
RULE
ADL Commends State Duma for Exempting Hate Crimes from New Amnesty Law

Moscow, May 31, 2000 ... The Moscow office of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today praised the State Duma for exempting article 282 of the Russian Criminal Code, which prohibits the incitement of ethnic or religious hatred, from the amnesty law passed by lower house of Russian parliament.

"ADL commends Russian lawmakers for exempting hate crimes from the amnesty minor-offense list," said Lev Krichevsky, Director of ADLís Moscow Office. "This exemption creates an important precedent and sends a clear message to law-enforcement agencies that illegal extremist, anti-Semitic and racist activities should be confronted more vigorously under currently existing legislation." Mr. Krichevsky added that "the exception to the amnesty law also sends a warning to extremists that hate crimes have been elevated to a proper status of seriousness and that hate-mongers can no longer count on amnesty as incentive to commit their crimes."

The amnesty declared by the Duma in a unanimous vote will affect thousands of Russian prisoners and citizens under criminal investigation who have not committed grave crimes.

At least six persons convicted of hate crimes have been pardoned under amnesty laws in the past five years. Several investigations of infringement of the law against incitement of race, religious or national hatred were dismissed under previous amnesties in 1995-1999.

The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.



 
 
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