Moscow has prepared a “Guantanamo List” including the names of US officials accused of violating human rights of Russian citizens in the US as well as in areas under American jurisdiction.
The list which, imposes visa restrictions on the accused US officials, was confirmed on Friday. The measure came in retaliation for Washington’s passage of the Magnitsky Act.
In December 2012, US President Barack Obama signed into law the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act that imposed visa restrictions and froze the US bank accounts of Russian officials who were allegedly linked to the death of Russian lawyer Magnitsky at a Russian prison in 2009. Russia instantly vowed to retaliate for the measure.
Russian Foreign Ministry’s Deputy Head Sergei Ryabkov said on Friday that in relations with the United States “we have so-called ‘blacklists.’ The makeup of these lists, as well as the criteria on which they are based, is not a matter of general discussion.”
Ryabkov further said that “As for the ‘Guantanamo List’, some information that is now publicly available is not far from the truth.”
He also highlighted that with the passage of time the contents of these lists might see some changes.
Previously, a total of 11 US officials had been blacklisted by Russia. However, Duma Foreign Affairs Committee representative Alexei Pushkov has announced that the list is extended to include 60 people.
Meanwhile, Ryabkov pointed to several occasions on which the US government as well as its legal establishments “had raced to unjustifiable conclusions, extending US jurisdiction to the territory of third states,” and violated human rights, including the rights of Russian citizens in the US.
The official went on to say that such measures should receive a response, adding that “One of the forms of this response is the restriction of entry to Russia for those people who participate in these violations.”
Ryabkov also stated that Moscow has been forced to take symmetrical measures. “We simply have to act in such a way. But responsibility for this lies with the United States.”