The author examines Russia's response to the threat of terrorism. Russian legislation defines terrorism in terms of an ideology and acts of violence. In addressing terrorism, Russia faces many asymmetrical threats, such as Chechen separatists, organized crime, and extremist racist groups. Russia's policy toward terrorism stresses the international character of the threat and the need for international cooperation in fighting against terrorism. A new law in 2006 gives the Federal Security Service top priority in leading the struggle against terrorism. While officials claim that a variety of recent laws are aimed specifically at undermining terrorist activities, some critics point out that they also make it possible for the state to curtail civil liberties. The Russian public strongly supports active state measures to crack down on terrorist groups.
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