Vladimir Putin has reportedly put the families of soldiers killed in Ukraine under surveillance, fearing they may speak out against the conflict.
Ukraine's military intelligence directorate published a report yesterday (July 10) stating that Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) in the Kostroma region put in a request to monitor individuals "prone to committing crimes".
They have also asked for background information about the individuals, according to the report.
READ MORE: Putin fumes as 12 senior officers 'wiped out in single strike' as defence system fails
The crimes the FSB fear these people will commit are in relation to the "public dissemination of false information and actions to discredit the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation and their participation in aggression against Ukraine".
"When collecting such information, special attention is paid to close relatives of servicemen who died on the territory of Ukraine or participated in the war," the report added.
In March, Russia passed new strict laws meaning that anyone found guilty of intentionally spreading "fake" news about Russia's army can be jailed for up to 15 years.
Putin has used the new laws to control the narrative about his "special military operation" in Ukraine.
UK facing 'hundreds' of deaths as 43C heatwave 'could melt train tracks'
For the latest breaking news and stories from across the globe from the Daily Star, sign up for our newsletter by clicking here.
On Friday (July 8) Moscow municipal deputy Alexei Gorinov, 60, was handed a seven-year prison sentence and banned from holding public office for four years after his release.
He was the first person to receive a hefty sentence under the news rules after he criticised the invasion, according to Newsweek.
Similarly, politician Mikhail Lobanov was detained for 15 days and forced to pay a 40,000R (£543) fine for "discrediting" the country's military on social media.
Putin's allies now want Russians to call Vlad 'our ruler' instead of 'President'
Vladimir Putin 'using Cold War tractors' in Ukraine after running out of usable kit
Vladimir Putin 'to become dad again at 69' as gymnast mistress 'pregnant with daughter'
Top Brit soldiers training thousands of Ukrainian recruits to fight Putin in England
NASA slams Russian astronauts after sick Ukraine taunt all the way from space
Source: Read Full Article