Amendments to law on Prosecutor’s Office challenged

The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation is to examine amendments to the law “On the Prosecutor’s Office” developed by the Ministry of Justice

Moscow, 22.07.2015

A special committee of the Russian Civic Chamber on small and medium enterprises, together with members of the Chamber actively interacting with NGOs, is to study a draft law regulating checks carried out by prosecutors on organisations, including those in the non-profit sector.

Amendments to the Federal Law “On the Prosecutor’s Office”, developed by the Ministry of Justice, establish timelines for checks by supervisory authorities, deadlines for requirements made of organisations subject to checks by the prosecutor’s office, and deadlines for the submission of required documents, materials, and statistical and other reports, according to the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation.

The Civic Chamber emphasises that the new procedures will affect both NGOs and businesses. Therefore the draft law will be sent for evaluation to a special committee of the Federal Chamber which undertakes activities relating to small and medium enterprises, as well as to members of an advisory body which actively interacts with NGOs.

In particular, the draft law stipulates that, at the request of the prosecutor’s office, an organisation must provide the required information in writing within five or ten working days. In emergencies, the organisation must submit documents to the supervisory authorities within one day.

In May 2015, the Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights drafted amendments to the law “On the Prosecutor’s Office” and passed it to the Ministry of Justice. The draft amendments became necessary following a judgment by the Constitutional Court on a complaint by human rights activists about the powers of the prosecutor’s office: the court found that controversial provisions of the law permit NGOs to be set objectively impossible tasks.

Author: Georgi Ivanushkin

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