Newspaper under threat for insulting PutinPosted Oct 20 2007
Saratovsky Reporter, a Saratov-based newspaper is at danger of being closed by the pro-Putin United Russia party for publishing a cartoon depicting Putin as a Soviet Spy in a Nazi uniform.
The complaint against the newspaper was brought by United Russia's representative, Alexandre Lando, under article 319 of the criminal code concerning “insulting a state representative”, Reporters Without Border said.
Lando claimed the cartoon was “offensive to the president and to [me] as a voter.” The region's directorate for cultural affairs said that it has withdrawn the newspaper's license as a result of the complaint.
Editor in chief Sergei Mikhailov said that the court informed him of the complaint which is based on the Federal law on extremism, reported Topix, an online news agency.
According to the article 319, a court can order a newspaper's closure after it has been given two warnings.
Reporters Without Borders reported that this was the second written warning for the newspaper.
The first warning was in regards to a Sept.23 article about inter-ethnic relations in Russia. An expert report issued by a Saratov university at the prosecutor's request deemed the article to be “offensive” to the Jewish community.