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The Constitution of the Russian Federation (free access)

(as amended on 12 July 2006)

The text of the document contains amendments made by:

Edict of the President of the Russian Federation No. 20 of 9 January 1996 (Rossiyskaya Gazeta N 7, 13.01.96);

Edict of the President of the Russian Federation No. 173 of 10 February 1996 (Rossiyskaya Gazeta N 31, 15.02.96);

Edict of the President of the Russian Federation No. 679 of 9 June 2001(Rossiyskaya Gazeta N 111, 14.06.2001);

Edict of the President of the Russian Federation No. 841 of 25 July 2003 (Rossiyskaya Gazeta N 151, 30.07.2003);

Federal Constitutional Act N 1-FKZ of 25 March 2004 (Rossiyskaya Gazeta, N 62, 26.03.2004) (the amendments came into effect as on 1 December 2005);

Federal Constitutional Act N 6-FKZ of 14 October 2005 (Rossiyskaya Gazeta, N 234, 19.10.2005) (the amendments came into effect as on 1 December 2007);

Federal Constitutional Act N 2-FKZ of 12 July 2006 (Rossiyskaya Gazeta, N 153, 15.07.2006) (the amendments came into effect as on 1 July 2007);

In this document, it is taken into account Decree of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation N 19-P on 16 June 1998.

SECTION ONE

Chapter 1. Foundations of the constitutional system

Article 1

1) The Russian Federation - Russia is a democratic federative rule-of-law state with a republican form of government.

2) The names Russian Federation and Russia are of equal validity.

Article 2

The individual and his rights and freedoms are the supreme value. Recognition, observance and protection of human and civil rights and freedoms is the obligation of the State.

Article 3

1) The repository of sovereignty and the sole source of authority in the Russian Federation is its multinational people.

2) The people exercise their authority directly and also through organs of State power and organs of local self-government.

3) The supreme direct expression of the authority of the people is the referendum and free elections.

4) Nobody can arrogate power in the Russian Federation. The seizure of power or the arrogation of powers are prosecuted in accordance with federal law.

Article 4

1) The sovereignty of the Russian Federation extends to the whole of its territory.

2) The Constitution of the Russian Federation and federal laws are paramount throughout the territory of the Russian Federation.

3) The Russian Federation ensures the integrity and inviolability of its territory.

Article 5

1) The Russian Federation consists of republics, krais, oblasts, cities of federal significance, an autonomous oblast and autonomous okrugs which are equal components of the Russian Federation.

2) A republic (state) has its own constitution and legislation. A krai, oblast, city of federal significance, autonomous oblast or autonomous okrug has its own charter and legislation.

3) The federal structure of the Russian Federation is based on its State integrity, the unity of the system of State power, the delimitation of areas of responsibility and powers between organs of State power of the Russian Federation and organs of State power of the components of the Russian Federation, and the equality and self-determination of the peoples in the Russian Federation.

4) All components of the Russian Federation are equal with each other in interrelationships with federal organs of State power.

Article 6

1) Citizenship of the Russian Federation is acquired and terminated in accordance with federal law and is uniform and equal irrespective of the basis on which it is acquired.

2) Each citizen of the Russian Federation possesses all rights and freedoms on its territory and bears equal obligations stipulated by the Constitution of the Russian Federation.

3) A citizen of the Russian Federation cannot be deprived of his citizenship or of the right to change it.

Article 7

1) The Russian Federation is a social state whose policy is aimed at creating conditions ensuring a worthy life and free development of the individual.

2) In the Russian Federation people's labor and health are protected, a guaranteed minimum wage is established, State support is ensured for the family, mothers, fathers, children, invalids and elderly citizens, the system of the social services is developed, and State pensions, allowances, and other guarantees of social protection are established.

Article 8

1) In the Russian Federation the unity of the economic area, the free movement of goods, services and financial resources, support for competition, and freedom of economic activity are guaranteed.

2) In the Russian Federation private, State, municipal and other forms of property enjoy equal recognition and protection.

Article 9

1) The land and other natural resources are utilized and protected in the Russian Federation as the basis of the life and activity of the peoples inhabiting the corresponding territory.

2) The land and other natural resources can be in private, State, municipal, or other forms of ownership.

Article 10

State power in the Russian Federation is exercised on the basis of the separation of legislative, executive and judicial powers. Organs of legislative, executive and judicial power are independent.

Article 11

1) State power in the Russian Federation is exercised by the President of the Russian Federation, the Federal Assembly (the Federation Council and the State Duma), the Government of the Russian Federation and the courts of the Russian Federation.

2) State power in the components of the Russian federation is exercised by the organs of State power formed by them.

3) The delimitation of areas of responsibility and powers between organs of State power of the Russian Federation and organs of State power of components of the Russian Federation is effected by the present Constitution and the Federation Treaty and other treaties concerning the delimitation of areas of responsibility and powers.

Article 12

In the Russian Federation local self-government is recognized and guaranteed. Within the limits of its powers local self-government is independent. Organs of local self-government do not form part of the system of organs of State power.

Article 13

1) In the Russian Federation ideological diversity is recognized.

2) No ideology may be established as the State ideology or as a compulsory ideology.

3) In the Russian Federation political diversity and a multi-party system are recognized.

4) Social associations are equal before the law.

5) The creation and activity of social associations whose objectives and actions are directed towards the forcible alteration of the basic principles of the constitutional system and the violation of the integrity of the Russian Federation, the undermining of the security of the State, the creation of armed formations, or the fueling of social, racial, national or religious strife are prohibited.

Article 14

1) The Russian Federation is a secular state. No religion may be established as the State religion or a compulsory religion.

2) Religious associations are separated from the State and are equal before the law.

Article 15

1) The Constitution of the Russian Federation has supreme legal force and is direct-acting and applies throughout the territory of the Russian Federation. Laws and other legal enactments adopted in the Russian Federation must not contradict the Constitution of the Russian Federation.

2) Organs of State power, organs of local self-government, officials, citizens, and associations thereof are obliged to observe the Constitution of the Russian Federation and the laws.