Punishment for desecration of flags of subjects of the Russian Federation can be tightened


RIA Novosti

Deputy Chairman of the Duma Committee on physical culture, sport, tourism and youth Affairs Valery Gazzayev (“Fair Russia”) has submitted to the state Duma a bill which proposes to introduce criminal liability for abuse of official symbols of the Russian Federation. In the case of the adoption of the document (a copy is in TASS), such actions will be equal to the desecration of state symbols.

Changes can be made to article 329 of the Criminal code (CC) of the Russian Federation. Now we will be talking about responsibility for violation of the state emblem or flag of the Russian Federation. For it is punishable by deprivation of liberty for a term up to one year, or compulsory works for the same term, or arrest for a term of three to six months, or deprivation of liberty for a term up to one year. As the developer in the explanatory Memorandum, the official symbols of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation deprived the criminal-law protection.

“When the next hooligans at a sporting event cynically, for the camera, mock the flag of a region, to publicly desecrate the flag, tearing it to pieces, trampled, burned directly into the stadium, the police can incriminate those persons disorderly conduct or violation of the rules of fire safety,” he writes.

Thus, according to Gazzaev, “an obvious public danger of such actions, when the result of intentional provocation faced by the residents of different subjects of the Russian Federation, deliberately sown enmity and hatred on the basis of affiliation to the region.”

The Deputy notes that although many regions have established in their legislation on administrative offences the liability for abuse of official symbols of the region, regional legislation is not to protect, if the act was committed in the territory of another subject. “Therefore, the required special legal rules at the Federal level”, – he stressed.

“The draft Federal law on introducing amendments to article 329 of the criminal code of Russian Federation establishes criminal-legal protection of the emblem and flag of the RF subject, on a par with the state emblem of the Russian Federation and the state flag of the Russian Federation” – offers Gazzaev.

The opinion of the developer

In the interview with TASS, the author of the bill emphasized that “national symbols is an expression of national identity.” “For all Russian citizens, regardless of nationality, flags, territories, republics, regions, Autonomous districts – the same shrines as the flag of Russia”, – said Gazzaev. To date, he said, the desecration of the flag of the region vandals are only threatened with a fine for disorderly conduct.

“We need to protect the state symbols. Every flag of any of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation – its history, its traditions, and to disrespect them is an insult to all multinational Russian people”, – the Deputy noted, brought up the example of some foreign countries where the regional symbols protects the criminal law.

“I propose to establish the criminal-legal protection of coats of arms and flags of subjects of the Russian Federation together with the state coat of arms and flag of the Russian Federation”, – he added. The defender stressed that his bill “is not prohibitive, and protective”. “Thus we save are healthy and natural human feelings, like patriotism, love for their native land, pride for her,” he said.

“Any bully, to mock the official symbols of the Russian regions, trying to push people from different regions, should know that he will have to answer on all severity of the criminal law”, – concluded the Deputy.