Russia has put a member of the Pussy Rajot group on the wanted list

Russian authorities today added Pyotr Verzilov, a prominent member of the Pussy Riot protest group, to the government’s wanted list, in the latest move to put pressure on opposition activists and independent media.

Verzilov’s name appeared on the list of wanted persons of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs because he did not report Canadian citizenship to the authorities, said his lawyer Leonid Solovyov.

Verzilov, the publisher of the independent portal Mediazona, was designated a “foreign agent” in September, along with the portal and editor-in-chief Sergei Smirnov. It is a controversial provision introduced for organizations or persons who, according to Moscow, are financed from abroad and are engaged in “political” activities in Russia.

Solovyov told the state news agency TASS that Verzilov was not threatened with imprisonment for the crime of not declaring another citizenship, and that if he was found guilty, he could be sentenced or given community service.

From 2014, Russians who do not register another citizenship can receive a fine of up to 200,000 rubles ($ 2,770) or up to 400 hours of community service.

In recent months, the government has classified a number of independent media outlets and journalists as “foreign agents” and searched the homes of several prominent journalists.

By Editor

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