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President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Mr Bortnikov, I have signed a rather important document amending the law on countering the legalisation of illegal incomes and the financing of terrorism. You and I have already discussed these amendments some time ago.
These amendments involve changes in procedures for the internal audit of monetary assets, as well as specifying obligations in submitting relevant information to authorised agencies that supervise such transactions. I believe this is one of the available mechanisms for countering these kinds of activities.
The activities in question entail criminal liability throughout the whole world. But given the heightened terrorist threat in our country, it is very important for our legal toolkit in this area to be up-to-date, adequate and efficient. In other words, it should allow the Federal Security Service and other agencies such as Russia’s Federal Financial Monitoring Service, the Prosecutor General’s Office, investigative agencies, and all other agencies that counter these kinds of crimes, to apply it.
Director of Federal Security Service Alexander Bortnikov: Mr President, over the last several years, we have had an active, on-going process of improving legislation to ensure security and to counter terrorism. The amendments to the 115th law that were passed and that you signed into law are clear evidence of this.
According to our estimates, the new norms and regulations that have been submitted as amendments will allow authorised agencies, the law enforcement system, and special services to operate more effectively in matters of countering corruption and terrorism financing.
I expect that we are entering a more active phase of this work, given the decisions made and the fact that all concerned departments, which we already discussed, are actively included in this process. And I am entirely certain that we will receive a great deal of assistance from our foreign partners, with whom we maintain constant contact on issues of countering terrorism, counteracting the financing of terrorism, and other particularly dangerous crimes. I expect that this will be very beneficial.
Dmitry Medvedev: Very well. I would like to point out to you and your colleagues in law enforcement that in any event, laundering money received via illegal activities is a crime. But these activities are particularly hazardous when they involve financing terrorism, because in this case, multiple crimes are being stacked, one on top of another. You must work with other colleagues to monitor what is happening in this area with extreme vigilance.
You cannot be soft on terrorists, even if some people do not agree with such approach. I would like you to continue your efforts within the framework of existing laws and your authority, while truly relying on support from international colleagues who make relevant efforts on every, including the top, level. They also don’t beat around the bush when they receive information that a particular financial resource is used to finance terrorism. We must pay attention to this in our country as well.