UN expert says human rights situation in Russia has 'significantly deteriorated'

A United Nations expert says the human rights situation in Russia has "significantly deteriorated" since the country invaded Ukraine in February last year.

UN Special Rapporteur Mariana Katzarova released a report on Monday after she investigated human rights in Russia.

The report notes that the administration of President Vladimir Putin revised the criminal law in March last year to enable authorities to charge people who are believed to have spread false information about Russia's military operations.

The report says at least 185 people have been indicted under the revised law.

It also says that more than 20,000 people who participated in protests against the Russian invasion were detained as authorities tightened crack-down on civil society.

More than 300 media outlets have been reportedly forced by the authorities to suspend activities.

The report says that the rights for the freedom of assembly and the freedom of speech have been significantly restricted in Russia. It calls on the Russian government to review related laws and free activists from detention.

It is the first report since the UN Human Rights Council appointed Katzarova as special rapporteur last year.