Ros-Lehtinen, McGovern Pen Letter to President Obama Urging Russian Officials be Added to Magnitsky List

Mar 14, 2014

Ros-Lehtinen, McGovern Pen Letter to President Obama Urging Russian Officials be Added to Magnitsky List

(WASHINGTON) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, joined by Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA), Co-Chairman of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, today sent a letter to President Obama asking for the Administration to add names of Russian officials responsible for human rights abuses to the Magnitsky list. The Magnitsky list was established in 2012, when the President signed the Russia and Moldova Jackson-Vanik Repeal and Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act into law, and was named after Russian lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky who was imprisoned by Russian authorities after he began investigating a large fraud scheme that involved Russian tax officials. Magnitsky was thrown into the notorious Butyrka prison where he was held for over 11 months without trial and was beaten, tortured and denied much needed medical treatment and subsequently died in custody as a result of his harsh treatment.

 Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:

“Putin and his officials have grown increasingly brazen with their attempts to silence dissent and with their human rights abuses against those in Russia who try to shine a light on the corruption of the state, yet the Administration has hesitated to take action despite having received several names to be added to the Magnitsky list. No names have been added to this list since April 2013, and that sends a message to the Kremlin that it can continue to violate the rights of the Russian people and the United States will sit by and take no action. I thank Jim and I are happy to join forces in urging the President to use the full intent and scope of the Magnitsky list to promote human rights in Russia, and we hope he will add more names to the list.”

 Statement by McGovern:

“The Magnitsky Act can be an important tool in the effort to promote human rights – but only if the Administration uses it,” Rep. McGovern said.  “I am proud to join with my colleague Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in this bipartisan effort, and I look forward to the Administration’s response.”

To read the letter, please click here.

For the list of names Reps. Ros-Lehtinen and McGovern submitted, please click here.