Vladimir Putin signs bill granting Russian presidents lifelong immunity

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Former presidents are also exempt from questioning by police or investigators. (File)

Moscow:

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday signed a law granting former presidents life-long immunity once they step down.

The bill, which was released online on Tuesday, offers former presidents and their families immunity from prosecution for crimes committed while they were alive.

You are also exempt from interrogation by the police or investigators, as well as searches or arrests.

The legislation was part of constitutional amendments passed in a nationwide vote this summer that will allow 68-year-old Putin to remain president until 2036.

Before the law came into effect, former presidents were exempt from prosecution only for crimes in office.

Now, a former president can still be stripped of immunity if charged with treason or other serious crimes and the charges are upheld by the Supreme Court and the Constitutional Court.

The Putin law, signed on Tuesday, will also grant former presidents a lifelong seat on the Federation Council or Senate, a position that ensures immunity from prosecution after leaving the presidency.

Last month, the upcoming bills sparked rumors that the longtime Russian leader is planning to resign over ill health – a claim the Kremlin has denied.

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On Tuesday, the Lower House State Duma passed a law keeping information about employees of the Russian judicial system, law enforcement, and regulatory and military authorities confidential.

The bill now requires Putin’s signature to become law, a move that is seen as a formality.

It comes a day after the opposition said Alexei Navalny called a suspected security agent and got him to admit that the Federal Security Service (FSB) tried to poison him to kill him in August.

Navalny said he had access to the security agent’s phone number from leaked logs and travel documents.

The Kremlin critic later released the agent’s alleged address and phone number, measures that would become illegal under the newly proposed law.

(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and published from a syndicated feed.)

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