WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and author of the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act, released the following statement in response to the announcement by the U.S. Treasury Department that five individuals and one entity have been added to the Magnitsky Act list.
“I welcome today’s updates to the Magnitsky List. It has been nearly a decade since Sergei Magnitsky’s death and many of those responsible for his persecution, detention and killing still walk with impunity through the streets of Russia. The new names added to the Magnitsky sanctions list are a sign to other human rights abusers in Russia and around the world that the United States will hold you accountable. There will be concrete repercussions for your actions.
“Today we also see accountability related to the 2015 assassination of former Russian Deputy Prime Minister, Boris Nemtsov. The opposition leader was the definition of courage and died defending the fundamental human rights of his fellow citizens. The addition of Ruslan Geremeyev to the Magnitsky List marks one step forward in the pursuit of justice and accountability related to Nemtsov’s tragic death.
“It is also heartening to see the Treasury Department continue to single out those responsible for the gross violations of human rights against LGBTQ individuals in Chechnya − a violent campaign by Chechen security forces to terrorize, detain, and abuse individuals on account of their sexual orientation. Violence against individuals because of their sexual orientation or gender identity is unacceptable. No one should fear for their life simply because of who they are.
“America’s values are our interests. As a country, we must remain steadfastly committed to the principles embedded in the Magnitsky law – accountability, the rule of law and respect for human rights.”