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Sergei Magnitsky case: EP calls for sanctions against 32 Russian officials

Date

18 Mar 2014

Sections

Europe's East
Today, the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament called on the Council to impose an EU-wide visa ban on 32 Russian officials involved in the Sergei Magnitsky case and to freeze their financial assets within the EU. This decision arose only 24 hours after European Foreign Ministers imposed EU-wide sanctions on 21 Russian and Ukrainian officials involved in the illegal detachment of Crimea.
 
“The recommendation of the European Parliament sends a clear signal to the Kremlin that the EU will not stand by idly and witness human rights violations. Yesterday, the Council decided to impose sanctions on 21 Russian and Ukrainian officials involved in the illegal separation of Crimea from Ukraine. In the European Parliament, we have confirmed this policy with the Recommendation concerning the case of Sergei Magnitsky. The list of names attached to the Recommendation contains persons included in the so-called Magnitsky Act adopted by the US Congress and an additional 16 names of people involved in the obstruction of a fair trial and in denying an access to medical care. The Council may extend this list, should it consider it appropriate”, said Jacek Protasiewicz MEP, Vice-President of the European Parliament and EPP Group Shadow Rapporteur on the Recommendation.
 
The Sergei Magnitsky case represents a well-documented and significant case of the violation of fundamental human rights in Russia. Sergei Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer who, while working in a Moscow law firm, discovered massive fraud on the part of Russian officials. He was arrested and accused of tax fraud and spent almost a year in prison and died in custody in 2009 before his trial began. In 2012, the US adopted the so-called Magnitsky Act, which allows the US authorities to refuse a visa to any person responsible for human rights violations and to freeze their assets.
 
Members of the European Parliament have once again called on the Council to draw up a common list of officials responsible for the death of Sergei Magnitsky, for the subsequent judicial cover-up and for the harassment of his mother and wife. However, it is the first time that the European Parliament has established a list of names of people who should be subject to sanctions. The list will be revised on a regular basis.
 
The voting in plenary session is scheduled for April.
 
The EPP Group is by far the largest political group in the European Parliament with 274 Members from 27 Member States.
 
MEP Contacts
Jacek PROTASIEWICZ
BRU - Tel: +32 (0)2 2845743 Fax: +32 (0)2 2849743
STR - Tel: +33 (0)3 88 175743 Fax: +33 (0)3 88 179743
 
Press Contacts
Agata Byczewska
Phone: +32 473 84 10 93

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