Russian rights activists have set up an Independent Human Rights Council to conduct judicial assessment of government activities and identify human rights violators.
Organizers announced the creation of the council at a press conference in Moscow on December 17.
Lyudmila Alekseyeva, the 85-year-old veteran rights campaigner and head of the Moscow Helsinki Group, said the council would draw a list of alleged Russian human rights violators to help U.S. authorities identify people they want to punish under new legislation.
The so-called Magnitsky Act
, named after Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who died in a Russian jail in 2009 after nearly a year of pretrial detention following his allegations of massive corruption by senior officials, has infuriated the Russian government.
Activists said the new council will seek volunteer lawyers to help with investigations and donations to fund its work.
Based on reporting by Interfax and Reuters