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Ukraine’s parliament decided on Sunday to further rid its country of Russian culture and influence, in a process some dubbed “derussification”, by voting to pass a law that restricts certain Russian books and music in the country.
The law prohibits the printing of books by Russian citizens. There is an exception, however, if the Russian citizen is willing to give up their Russian passport and become a Ukrainian citizen, their books can still be printed. The ban also only applies to authors who held Russian citizenship after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
The law also prohibits the import of books into Ukraine. From now on, books printed in Russia and Belarus can no longer be imported, and special permission is required for importing books in Russian from any other country.
Ukraine’s parliament didn’t stop at books alone – the parliament also passed a law that bars any music of post-1991 Russian citizens from being played by the media and on public transport. The law also requires television and radio stations to broadcast more voice and music content in Ukrainian.
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“The laws are designed to help Ukrainian authors share quality content with the widest possible audience, which after the Russian invasion does not accept any physical Russian creative products,” said Ukraine’s Minister of Culture, Oleksandr Tkachenko.
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Ukraine says the laws are needed to combat Russian efforts to erase Ukrainian culture, while Russia says such measures oppress Russian speakers in Ukraine.
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is expected to sign the laws.
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