Procedure for category of “foreign agent”

The Ministry of Justice has spelt out the
procedure related to the categorisation of an NGO as a ‘foreign agent’


to Nezavisimaya Gazette, members of the presidential council on the development
of civil society and human rights have received a text from the ministry
describing the procedure that applies when an NGO is categorised as a ‘foreign

receiving finance from abroad and engaging in political activities but not
conceding that they are a ‘foreign agent’ will be given the opportunity to
defend themselves in court or to change the scope of their activities. The process
was explained on behalf of the ministry during a round table. If, in the course
of a planned or random inspection, ministry representatives uncover evidence
that an organisation is acting as a ‘foreign agent’, it will be served with a
cautionary notice. The organisation will be able to contest the notice in court
where the ministry’s reasons may be tested. If the court agrees with the
ministry, the organisation will be obliged to register as a ‘foreign agent’. If
the organisation defaults the court will impose an administrative sanction on
it or its chief executive. If, following that process, the organisation does
not register as required, and does not cease to engage in political activity or
to receive finance from abroad, the ministry will proscribe its activities and
institute criminal proceedings.


NGOs may voluntarily register as a ‘foreign agent’. Currently not one
organisation is registered as such. At the end of 2012, a Chuvash civil rights
defence organisation ‘Shchit i Mech’ (Shield and Sword) applied for
registration as a ‘foreign agent’ but was refused on the ground that no
evidence of political activity had been identified.

Get involved

Share This