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MOSCOW, January 19 (Itar-Tass) – Many countries have human rights abuse complaints to make against the United States, so they may eventually join Russia’s
Guantanamo List or create their own equivalents, several Russian political scientists told Itar-Tass in the wake of reports Russia has retaliated the United States’ Magnitsky Act to have blacklisted 60 US citizens responsible for human rights abuse. All have been prohibited from entering Russia.
“This is a direct and proportionate response to the Magnitsky Act,” said the vice-president of the Center for Strategic Communications, Dmitry Abzalov.
In his opinion, there are enough countries around the world critical of the United States for the secret CIA prisons in Europe and the Guantanamo prison, where torture was allowed for a long time.
“A large coalition might be put together on that basis,” Abzalov said. He speculated that in the longer term other players might join Russia’s initiative.
About the personalities on that list Abzalov said there would be “civil servants and military involved in human rights violations.” The expert believes that “there will be no fundamental changes to the lists until next spring,” if there are no hostile actions by the United States.
“Neither list will be expanded excessively,” he said.
“Russia should take a more serious attitude to human rights violations in the world,” said the general director of the Foreign Policy Studies and Initiatives Institute, Veronika Krasheninnikova, adding that “the United States is the worst abuser.”
The expert is certain that Russia’s list is “a positive factor.”
She confirmed that the list should include “those US citizens who are responsible for keeping prisoners at the Guantanamo prison, for future, for events at Abu Ghraib, for the CIA’s secret jails and for moving people to those countries where torture is not prohibited.
The current list contains a tiny 60 names, so “one can imagine that competition for getting on the list might be rather strong,” Krasheninnikova said with a shade of irony.