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Russian Economists Fear Blow From 'Foreign Agent' Law

Russian economists say a new law that might force their research centers to register as "foreign agents" could have a disastrous impact on the economy.

In a letter published by the business daily "Vedomosti" on May 30, 15 leading economic experts said their funding and cooperation with the government was threatened by the law.

The controversial legislation requires all NGOs in Russia receiving money from abroad and engaging in political activity to register as foreign agents.

President Vladimir Putin's opponents say the law is mainly intended to stifle dissent.

Prosecutors have raided the Moscow offices of domestic and international NGOs after the law came into force in November.

Last month, a court in Moscow fined Golos, an election-monitoring NGO, for failing to register the organization as a foreign agent.

Based on reporting by and Reuters