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  Thursday, September 19, 2019
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Russia's State Duma approved Wednesday a bill on amnesty to mark the lower chamber's centenary
Russia's State Duma, or lower house of parliament, approved Wednesday a bill on amnesty to mark the lower chamber's centenary. The bill to release or end criminal proceedings against juveniles, people who committed crimes when aged under 18, women with dependent children, pregnant women, women over 55, and men over 60, was approved by 433 members of the State Duma with one abstention. To pass the bill, 226 votes were required. The amnesty, however, will not be granted to those convicted for serious crimes and inmates repeatedly violating prison rules. People who have been pardoned already, but committed crimes since then will not be eligible for the amnesty either. The bill was introduced last week in the lower house, which has the constitutional right to declare pardons and pass amnesty bills. Bill co-author Pavel Krasheninnikov said earlier that over 2,000 prisoners and up to 15,000 people on trial for minor crimes could be pardoned. Some amnesties have been used in Russia to regulate population in overcrowded prisons, which are also notorious for poor inmate conditions.
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