Moscow City Council deputies have opposed a new bill that empowers the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) to impose preventive measures against individuals committing extremist actions, a Russian daily said on Tuesday.
The new bill, which allows "preventive measures" such as official warnings and fines against individuals whose activities could be considered extremist, has fuelled fears among opposition parties of a revival of Soviet-era practices.
Kommersant said the bill allows the FSB to publish warnings in the media about suspected extremists without their consent.
The Russian government said the measures were intended to prevent extremism and terrorism, but opposition members say they are being targeted.
The government earlier said in an explanatory note the new law is needed to "consolidate the establishment of special prevention measures."
The bill was approved on June 11 by the Russia's lower house of the parliament (State Duma), mainly by members of the leading United Russia party.
On Monday, Moscow City Council deputies sent their amendments to the bill to the FSB. They insist that the FSB only impose warnings after they are sanctioned by a prosecutor. Under the current bill, the FSB only have to notify a prosecutor after the warning has been given.
The deputies also insisted that warnings only be given if their reasoning is stated in the law. Currently, the bill stipulates that only "sufficient data identified during special operations" is needed to issue a warning.
A further demand is that guarantees be given that the FSB do not interfere in competition between businesses.
Two United Russia deputies, Vladimir Vasiliev, who also chairs the Russian State Duma Security Committee, and his deputy, Vladimir Kolesnikov said that a rule that allows the FSB to fine or detain individuals for 15 days for disobeying an order or requirement might be withdrawn from the bill. They said that fines and arrest warrants could only be imposed by a court.
Deputy to the State Duma security committee chairman Mikhail Grishankov said a number of amendments to the bill will be discussed at a committee meeting on Thursday.
The bill is part of a wider FSB policy to increase counter-terrorism measures in Russia.
In June the FSB director Alexander Bortnikov signed a draft order under which the service will offer monetary rewards to people who pass on information about suspected terrorist activity.
MOSCOW, June 29 (RIA Novosti)