MOSCOW, April 22. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Ministry agrees with the conclusions of the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the UN Human Rights Council regarding the US Rewards for Justice program’s non-compliance with international norms on protection and promotion of human rights, Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Thursday.
"We have examined the joint statement [on the Rewards for Justice program]. We shared the assessments, expressed in the document, regarding this program’s non-compliance with the international standards in protection and promotion of human rights," she said.
Zakharova underscored that the US’s offer of money in exchange for information on people, who were not officially charged, contradicts the "basics of jurisprudence, law, presumption of innocence." In this case, she explained, these people end up stripped of necessary procedural guarantees and the right for legal protection.
Besides, the spokeswoman noted, by this program, the US illegally interferes in personal and family life of legally innocent people and violate their honor and dignity. According to Zakharova, this program implies rewards for cooperation to people whom the US considers connected to terrorism, while refusal may be met with threats.
"This, of course, contradicts on of the basic international standards of a just court hearing, the right not to witness against oneself. […] Besides, by this step, the Americans pass the burden of proving to individual people," she added.
"Therefore, we cannot but solidarize with the UN experts’ conclusion that this program must be brought into compliance with the norms or international law," Zakharova concluded.