President Vladimir Putin on Saturday defended an unprecedented crackdown on dissenting voices in Russia at a time of "armed conflict" with Ukraine, urging everyone to follow "certain rules."

"It's the year 2023, and Russia is engaged in an armed conflict with a neighbour. And I think that there should be a certain attitude towards people who harm us inside the country," Putin told reporters in Saint Petersburg.

"We must keep in mind that in order for us to achieve success, including in a conflict zone, everyone needs to follow certain rules," Putin added.

The Russian president was responding to a question from a reporter who asked him to comment on the recent jailing of a theatre director and a sociologist.

"The people were arrested for the words they said or wrote. Is this normal?" Andrei Kolesnikov, a veteran reporter for Kommersant daily, asked Putin.


This week Russian authorities detained prominent sociologist Boris Kagarlitsky, 64, and accused him of calling for terrorism online.

In May, a Moscow court ordered the arrest of theatre director Yevgeniya Berkovich, 38, on charges of "justifying terrorism" over an award-winning play about Russian women recruited online to marry radical Islamists in Syria.

Putin said he did not know who Kagarlitsky and Berkovich were.

"I hear these names for the first time and do not really understand what they did or what was done to them," Putin said. "I'm just telling you about my overall attitude towards the problem."

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"This is absolutely not in the interests of these countries, they should be aware of this," Peskov said after being asked about Macron's statement.

Criticism of Moscow's offensive in Ukraine has been outlawed and most prominent members of the liberal opposition are either in jail or in exile.

Last week authorities detained former separatist commander and nationalist blogger Igor Girkin on accusations of "extremism" after he criticised Putin.

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Comments (3)
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What a hypocritical asshole if you don't they will inprison you but I don't have to follow international laws. I'm allowed to commit war crimes because? The sooner they are rid of him the better.
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Cluster bomb the orcs until they are all dead in their ridiculous trenches. The Americans have millions of these weapons.
offspring of most famous cornered rat in history
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certain rules????
you fuckface from satan leninberg, satanic, fascist nazi terrorist vladolf putler, who are you to tell people to hold to "certain rules" while you are violating every international rule or law
you little dicker cunter facefucker from satan leninburg
my greatgreatgreatgreatgrewatgreatgreatparent looked you up your trousers when you socalled cornered this familymember and saw vladolf putler having the most little of dicks ever
satanic nazi fascist terrorist vladolf putler your dick is thinier than a pinpoint
you fucking lowlife satanic, fascist terrorist nazi vladolf putler with a pinpoint dick