Russia to impose UK sanctions

Source: AFP Published: 2020/7/8 17:33:40

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends the online meeting with members of the government at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow, Russia, on April 15, 2020. (Kremlin photo)

Moscow will apply counter-sanctions against Britain, the Kremlin said Tuesday, after London blacklisted Russian officials for their alleged involvement in the death of lawyer Sergei Magnitsky.

"We can only regret such unfriendly measures," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. 

The 25 Russians included on the sanctions list drawn up by Britain's Foreign Office were included for their alleged involvement in the death of Magnitsky.

Magnitsky, a tax consultant for British financier William Browder, died in prison of an untreated illness in 2009 after accusing Russian officials of tax fraud of $230 million.

Russian officials to be targeted by the sanctions include Alexander Bastrykin, the head of the powerful Investigative Committee that reports directly to President Vladimir Putin.

The Russian Embassy in London on Monday denounced the sanctions, saying the country's legal system was "independent" of the executive authorities and "guided by law alone."

A spokesman for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Tuesday that the sanctions were targeting individuals involved in "some of the most notorious human rights violations of recent years."

London has accused Russia of "destabilizing" activities including the 2018 chemical attack that almost killed former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter.

Russia has rejected accusations that officers from its GRU military intelligence agency used a powerful nerve agent to poison Skripal in retribution for his work with British and other Western spy services.



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