Updated at 16:42,06-12-2016

Amendments to regulations against terrorism and extremism take effect

Amendments to regulations against terrorism and extremism took effect in Belarus on November 12.

A bill of amendments to the Criminal Code and the laws against terrorism and extremism was passed by the House of Representatives on October 8, approved by the upper parliamentary house, the Council of the Republic, on October 10 and signed by Alyaksandr Lukashenka into law on October 26.

The amendments provide for a new definition of the word "terrorism."

"Terrorism" will now be defined as ideologies and the application of ideologies that advocate the use of violence or threats of violence to influence government decisions, obstruct political or public activities, provoke international tensions or wars, intimidate the public, and destabilize the public order.

The term "terrorism" was formerly limited to explosions, arsons and other activities that put people's life and health in danger to destabilize the public order, intimidate the population, influence government decisions, or obstruct political or public activities.

The amendments also specify the term "extremist materials," extend the list of governmental agencies whose functions include the prevention of extremism, and specify the entities that may be given formal warnings for violating regulations against extremism.