Russian Legislators Approve Greater Government Control Over the Internet and Nonprofits

Russia’s upper house of Parliament moved to strengthen controls over the Internet and nonprofit organizations on Wednesday, prompting a warning from the United Nations human rights chief that the Kremlin is sliding back into Soviet ways.A series of initiatives have been introduced as President Vladimir V. Putin begins a six-year term, facing an increasingly assertive opposition. The government has imposed draconian fines for people who participate in unsanctioned protests, and legislators voted to reinstitute criminal charges for slander, rolling back a reform adopted seven months ago by Dmitri A. Medvedev, Mr. Putin’s predecessor.

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