On 23 October the Russian State Duma adopted in the second and third readings a draft law initiated by the government that toughens punishment for espionage, disclosure of state secrets and high treason, extends the scope of these crimes, and introduces a new definition of ”treason”. We are extremely concerned about this initiative and urge the Russian authorities not to adopt the law as it is harmful to international cooperation, for civil society, and for all Russian citizens. We also urge the EU leaders to immediately express their strong opposition towards this draft law in their communication with Russian authorities.

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