WASHINGTON —U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and senior Democratic Senator on the U.S. Helsinki Commission, issued the following condemnation of the assassination of former Russian Deputy Prime Minister Boris Nemtsov in Moscow. Senator Cardin hosted Mr. Nemstov numerous times in Washington before the U.S. Helsinki Commission.
“Boris Nemtsov was the definition of courage. I was honored to know him and bear witness to his defense of his beloved Russia. He stood up for the most basic right of expressing public dissent. Mr. Nemstov was a partner and ally as we moved forward the groundbreaking Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law accountability Act. His killing is shocking and outrageous to the civilized world but, sadly, not unexpected in Putin’s Russia today.
“At the Helsinki Commission, we rely greatly on the personal testimony of people like Mr. Nemtsov who have direct experience and expertise on their own country’s compliance – and noncompliance — with international human rights commitments. These individuals should be able to speak the truth here, and in their home countries, without fear of violent retribution. Mr. Nemstov’ voice may have been silenced by a gunman in Moscow, but I will do all in my power to ensure his legacy reverberates throughout the world.”