The Federation Council has approved amendments to the federal law 'On the media', the Russia Legal Code and the code on administrative violations that are aimed at holding people and companies responsible for violations of electoral law.
The amendments widen the basis for suspending electronic and print media during election campaigns. A court can take such a decision if an electoral commission shows that a media outlet has violated administrative rules for a second time. Broadcasting licenses can also be withdrawn from media organisations that repeatedly break electoral and referendum legislation.
Breaking the rules on financing a candidate or party's election campaign will lead to a fine or a prison sentence of up to 1 year. Falsifying votes will carry a penalty of up to 4 years in prison.
The Ilyushin 20 (Il-20) military electronic reconnaissance aircraft of the Russian Air Force with 14 servicemen on board that went off radar screens off the coast of Syria was shot down by Syrian air defense systems over the Mediterranean Sea