U.S. ambassador doesn't see similarity between Russian and U.S. laws on foreign agents

U.S. ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul does not find any similarities between the new Russian law on NGOs and the U.S. Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).

There is nothing in common between them, he said in an interview with the Russian online newspaper gazeta.ru. If you empirically compare FARA with the Russian law, they are very different, he said. The ambassador said that in line with FARA, lobbyists working for foreign states are obliged to register.

The new Russian legislation terms as foreign agents NGOs that don't work for foreign governments, he said. It is a simple fact - they take money wherever they can but they don't work on behalf of foreign funds, he said. It may be interesting for the readers to learn that there are thousands of foreign funds and governments that finance American NGOs, he said. This is natural, normal, it is general practice, the diplomat said.

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