Senators Cardin and McCain Call for a Swift Passage of Global Magnitsky After Clearing the House Foreign Affairs Committee

May 19, 2016


For Immediate distribution


Senators Cardin and McCain Call for a Swift Passage of Global Magnitsky After Clearing the House Foreign Affairs Committee


19 May 2016 – Following yesterday’s approval of the Global Magnitsky Human Rights bill by the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Senators Cardin and McCain called on the House speaker to swiftly bring it to a vote.


For too long in too many countries, perpetrators of human rights violations and grand corruption have not been held to account for their crimes and yet continue to enjoy travel and financial privileges in the United States. With today’s House Foreign Affairs Committee passage of the Global Magnitsky Human Rights and Accountability Act, we are one step closer to preventing such impunity, – said Senators Ben Cardin and John McCain in a joint statement. – We …call on Speaker Ryan to ensure a full House vote on Global Magnitsky without delay.”


Cardin and McCain, the two original co-sponsors of the Global Magnitsky bill, spoke about the importance of Sergei Magnitsky’s legacy.


“The bill is named for Sergei Magnitsky, who has the unfortunate distinction of serving as a prime example of the corrupt, horrific crimes that befall countless innocent people worldwide. Mr. Magnitsky lost his life for simply doing his job and trying to do the right thing when he discovered widespread fraud and abuse of power in Russia. Just like Magnitsky, human rights defenders are victimized and stigmatized around the globe,” said senators Cardin and McCain.


The House Foreign Affairs Committee rejected an amendment proposed by 68-year old Congressman Dana Rohrabacher seeking to remove the name of Magnitsky from the Global Human Rights bill. To justify his amendment, Congressman Rohrabacher claimed he could not figure out who stole US$230 million from the Russian budget – Sergei Magnitsky or Russian officials. This is despite the fact that the money has been found in the accounts of Russian officials and their families and most recently, through the Panama Papers, on account of Sergei Roldugin, a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin.


Other Congressmen firmly rejected Congressman Rohrabacher’s amendment describing it as an unacceptable attempt to “rewrite history.”


Congressman Connolly said that it was important to call out behaviour of President Putin which did not adhere to international norms, “whether in Crimea or in a prison cell.”


Russian veteran human rights defender Ludmila Alexeeva, chair of the Moscow Helsinki Group, sent a message to members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee ahead of the mark up, stating:


“Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has been fooled by the Russian disinformation, and has argued that the name of Sergei Magnitsky be dropped from the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Bill. To do this would be a gross betrayal of the human rights movement, and of the legacy of Sergei Magnitsky who had stoically sacrificed his life in confronting corruption and official abuse in Russia. … To remove his name from the Global Magnitsky Human Rights bill would be a sellout of victims of oppression and abuse everywhere around the world, whom Serge Magnitsky has given hope, and of the principles of integrity he had paid with his life.”


During the mark-up, congressman Engel said the Global Magnitsky bill would show to all that human rights abuse and corruption cannot go on with impunity:


“This legislation would send a powerful message that human-rights abusers and corruption aren’t just internal matters.  They are the concern of all countries, and they should not be permitted to go on with impunity.”


On the eve of the Global Magnitsky bill’s mark-up, Russian authorities announced a new criminal case against Alexei Navalny, the Russian anti-corruption activist and Magnitsky sanctions supporter. The new case was opened in response to a complaint from ex police officer Pavel Karpov, who has been sanctioned by the US and the European Parliament for his role in Magnitsky case.


Last month, the Russian authorities also announced another criminal probe opened on another spurious application of Pavel Karpov against Alexei Navalny and William Browder for murder of Sergei Magnitsky in Russian police custody, as part of a CIA plan.


The reason for the most recent attack on civil society leaders and outburst of the Russian disinformation on the Magnitsky case is the fear of corrupt Russian officials to not be able to enjoy the fruits of their corruption in the West as a result of Magnitsky sanctions. To fight the Magnitsky sanctions, they use fabricated criminal cases, and disinformation both inside the country and in the West. Russian civil society leaders and independent media have been almost completely shut down, while the Russian population is fed a diet of myths and disinformation,” said William Browder, a leader of the global justice for Sergei Magnitsky movement and author of “Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s No 1 Enemy.


Sergei Magnitsky, who exposed the theft of US$230 million from the Russian budget and gave testimony implicating government officials, was arrested and killed in Moscow detention center in November 2009. Those responsible for his death and those he exposed for the US$230 million theft have not been brought to justice.


Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act passed the U.S. Senate vote in December 2015.


For more information, please contact

Justice for Sergei Magnitsky

+44 207 440 1777




No Comments Yet.

Got something to say?

  • Link

Hermitage TV

Visit “Stop the Untouchables” site

For more information please visit site..