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New Russian anti-terror laws precede Sochi Olympics

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New Russian anti-terror laws precede Sochi Olympics
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A raft of new anti-terrorism laws have been submitted to the Russian parliament – the Duma.

State security services have been heavily involved in drafting the amendments.

The bill would allow officers the right to stop and search, monitor the Internet and social media, and have wide ranging powers to prevent the laundering of money from criminal activity.

Communist MP Oleg Denisenko, who is deputy head of the Duma’s security and anti-corruption committee, said: “We propose a maximum sentence of up to life imprisonment for preparing and organising terrorist acts. Of course, it will not stop a suicide terrorist, but will be a stop factor for the organisers”

The December bomb attacks in the city of Volgograd that left 34 people dead sent shockwaves through Russia’s security services.

Following the blasts authorities detained 700 people, to date no one had been charged.

Russia is on edge as the Winter Olympics are due to begin in Sochi in February – doubly so as the venue is close to the North Caucasus Russia’s most volatile region and the origin of many terrorist attacks in the country.