Posts Tagged ‘ukraininan week’

December 2012

Will the Magnitsky Act Apply to Ukraine?

The Ukrainian Week

November 16 marked the third anniversary of Sergey Magnitsky’s death in a Russian jail. The U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee marked the occasion by passing the Magnitsky Bill. It now has moved on to the Senate for approval—the next step on its way to becoming law.

Provided the language Senators John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Ben Cardin (D-Md.) have written survives the legislation process, it is possible that the Magnitsky Act would apply to Ukraine. It will be up to the President and the State Department to decide, who, if anyone, may end up on a “Magnitsky List”.

The Magnitsky Act seeks “to impose sanctions on persons responsible for the detention, abuse, or death of Sergei Magnitsky, and for other gross violations of human rights in the Russian Federation, and for other purposes.” Individuals guilty of massive human rights violations would be refused visas, and their assets within the preview of the U.S. government would be frozen.

Ukraine’s treatment of former Premier Yulia Tymoshenko and ex-Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko, as well as of other political prisoners, may come under “other purposes” language, applicable to countries beyond Russia.

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