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Belarus adopts law against extremism

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MINSK, October 11 (RIA Novosti) - Belarusian parliamentarians adopted almost unanimously a law on combating extremism on a second reading Wednesday.

The law defines extremism as activities aimed at the country's Constitution and its territorial integrity, coup attempts, the formation of illegal armed groups, terrorist acts, and attempts to incite racial, ethnic or religious discord. The law also envisages Belarus' involvement in international efforts against extremism.

Vladimir Borshchov, a deputy chairman of the Belarusian Permanent Commission for National Security, said: "The law has been fully coordinated with the republic's relevant bodies, and corresponds with the similar law of the Russian Federation."

He also said Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko had already approved the legislation.

Russia's lower chamber of parliament, the State Duma, passed the law on extremism on a third and final reading July 8.

Under the Russian law, the term "extremism" encompasses assassination attempts against statesmen and public figures, hampering the work of authorities, orchestrating riots, hooliganism and vandalism with ideological, political, religious, racial or ethnic motives, propaganda of racial, social, religious or ethnic superiority, and the production of corresponding printed, audio and visual materials.

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