The Kremlin press service reports that President Vladimir Putin has signed into law a controversial bill that brands nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) which receive funding from abroad as "foreign agents."
The law, which was cleared by the upper house of parliament and the Federation Council earlier in July, will force NGOs engaging in "political activity" to register with the Justice Ministry as "foreign agents" and to file a report to officials every quarter.
It has caused huge concern among activists who fear it will be used to stigmatise critical NGOs.
This month, the U.S. State Department expressed "deep concern" about the NGO law but was rebuked by Russia for "gross interference."
Based on reporting by ITAR-TASS and Interfax