Germany will send People to Prison for using the “Z” Sign
The German provinces of Lower Saxony and Bavaria are taking action against the “Z” symbol, which is considered a sign of support for the Russian army in the war in Ukraine. Public use is punishable. North Rhine-Westphalia is also considering legal action against people who promote the Putin regime, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) reported.
Lower Saxony and Bavaria are taking action against the “Z” symbol, which is the symbol of the Russian army in the war against Ukraine. The two federal states have ordered the public use of the symbol in Germany, for example during demonstrations, by law. Possible penalties for using the sign of the Russian aggressor in Ukraine is a fine or up to three years in prison.
The government of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia is also considering criminal consequences for the use of the Z symbol in public places.
“Russia's aggressive war against Ukraine, which is contrary to international law, is causing indescribable suffering. I cannot understand how one can pretend to be significant or approve of these crimes,” said the interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Herbert Reul (CDU) in front of the Rheinische Post. “That is why we in North Rhine-Westphalia are exploring all possibilities to take criminal action against the use of the Russian army's Z symbol.”
In Russia, the Latin letter “Z” appears very often in public places. This letter does not exist in Cyrillic. Many Russian military vehicles also carry the letter “Z”. The sign is displayed on buildings, cars or clothing to show approval of Russia's war against Ukraine.
Lower Saxony Interior Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) has said that anyone who publicly approves of Russian President Vladimir Putin's aggressive war against Ukraine with the “Z” symbol should expect criminal consequences in the German province.
“It is completely unclear to me how this symbol can be used even in our country to approve these crimes,” said Bavarian Justice Minister Georg Eisenreich (CSU), warning that “supporters who publicly use the Z sign of the Russian armed forces, can be held accountable for patronage of crimes.”
“Do not approve of crimes that are contrary to international law.”
The basis for the actions of the provinces is in paragraph 140 of the Penal Code. It punishes conduct that is understood as publicly demonstrating approval of aggressive wars that can disrupt public peace.
“We do not accept when crimes contrary to international law are justified,” said Minister Eisenbach.
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