Russia on Friday added The Moscow Times, an online publication covering Russia, to its list of foreign agents, a label authorities commonly use to stifle critics.

Russia’s justice ministry also added an artist and journalists to the list that it traditionally updates on Fridays.

“The online publication The Moscow Times disseminated inaccurate information about the decisions taken and policies pursued by the authorities,” the ministry said.

The Moscow Times has a website in English and in Russian. A part of its staff left Russia after the beginning of the offensive in Ukraine.

Russia accused the publication of having “carried out actions aimed at forming a negative public image” and of featuring material written by other foreign agents.


The label, which is reminiscent of the term “enemies of the people” of the Soviet era, requires individuals or groups to disclose sources of funding.

It also compels them to mark all publications -- including social media posts -- with a “foreign agent” tag.

This puts foreign agents and people sharing their content at risk of heavy fines.

The Kremlin has stepped up efforts to stamp out dissent since launching the assault on Ukraine, with most high-profile opponents in exile or behind bars.

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