Feminists who dislike Vladimir Putin, support the right to divorce, and choose not to have children are a threat to all of Russia, according to a Putin ally who’s pushing to recognize all feminists as “extremists.”
Oleg Matveychev, a member of Putin’s United Russia party who recently hailed the Russian president for—as he put it—turning the country into an “apex of goodness,” has drafted legislation that would recognize the fight for women’s rights as an “extremist ideology.”
In an interview with Abzats published Tuesday, the State Duma lawmaker described feminists as an enemy of the Kremlin second only to Ukrainians.
“Feminists in the West are all against Putin, against Russia, and for the war. Feminists in Ukraine have actually said that real feminism is for women to serve alongside men against the Russians. Our feminists are simply agents of the West. They are engaged in the destruction of traditional values, their activities are contrary to the president’s decree on the support of traditional values. They are for divorce, childlessness, and abortion. They are acting against the demographic policy of the Russian Federation,” Matveychev said.
He didn’t explain how Putin’s mobilization wiping out a whole generation of the country’s men was in keeping with the demographic policy of the Russian Federation.
The legislation will first be assessed by the Commission for the Investigation of Foreign Interference in Russia’s Internal Affairs, after which it will be submitted to the State Duma, he said.
Matveychev’s draft legislation comes after Russian media claimed Daria Trepova, the woman accused of killing a famous Russian propagandist over the weekend with a bomb disguised as a statue, was a supporter of radical feminism.
It also comes roughly six years after Putin signed legislation to decriminalize domestic violence, effectively dismissing the issue altogether and allowing first-time offenders to get off with nothing but a small administrative fine.
Activists have said the move resulted in a surge of violence against women and emboldened abusers.