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Russian Security Services Forced to Reveal Home Searches

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) must now inform home owners and residents if their property is searched by government agents.

The FSB must notify residents 24 hours after the search has taken place, according to a new decree signed on Aug. 12. Contact can be made by post, email or fax, telephone, or in person.

Writing on Facebook, lawyer and open government activist Ivan Pavlov claimed the measure was part of the FSB’s campaign for greater transparency. “Noticed that things have been moved around at home? Go and check your inbox,” he said.

The U.S. State Department accused the FSB of “continuous interference” in the lives of American diplomats posted in the country in June, accusing agents of breaking into foreigners' homes.

U.S. newspaper The Washington Post newspaper claimed that Russian security agents had intimidated American diplomats by secretly rearranging their furniture, turning on lights and in one case, defecating on the carpet. Russia denies the allegations, claiming its own diplomatic staff in the United States face “continuous provocations from the FBI and C.I.A’s illegal methods.”

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