The Most Strictly Anti-terrorism Act:  Russia and China Focus

As we all know in the year of 2016, terrorism aroused general concerns of the whole world since there have been many terrorist attacks worldwide.  When the new anti-terrorism act that had been previously signed by Russian president Vladimir Putin took effect on July 20th 2016, it attracted immediate worldwide attention.

In the act, a new definition for crime of shielding is given: those who are well aware of terrorist activities under planning or implementation but do not report to the law-enforcing department, can be sentenced up to 1 year in prison. “International terrorist activity” is also classified as a new crime: those who implement or assist terrorist activities within Russian territory that cause causalities of Russian citizens, undermine national peace or state interests of Russia can be sentenced to life imprisonment. According to the new act, the age for criminal responsibility is declined to 14 years old, and those who spread messages on terrorism on the Internet can be sentenced up to 7 years in prison.

The most controversial clause in the act is that, since July 2018, telecommunication enterprises are required to keep users transmitted files data for 3 years as well as calls, SMS, images for 6 month. One of Russia’s major telecom operator clarified that changes of the new law will costs more than 2.2 trillion rubles for telecommunication enterprises, and the bulk of this amount does not depend on the storage period information.

To compare with the new Russian Act, the PRC Counterterrorism Law provides a cap of 15-day detention for the person who breaks the PRC Counterterrorism Law.  For example, if the telecommunications service operators or internet service providers fails to provide technical support and assistance, it will be fined not more than CNY500,000 and their persons directly in charge and other persons directly liable will be fined not more than CNY500,000, with a detention of not more than 15 days.

Meanwhile, in the Criminal Law, the punishment on terrorism is regulated more strictly, with a cap of 10-year incarceration and the terrorism can be also considered as “endangering public security” in China, for which the maximum sentence is death penalty. Different to Russia’s Anti-terrorism Act, the terrorism can be punished not only by the PRC Counterterrorism Law but also by the Criminal Law.

It is absolutely interesting and useful, nowadays, knowing the different approaches that different countries has to treat such an important topic like terrorism is. If you need more information about this topic also in other countries, please write to