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Russia Vows 'Tough' Response To U.S. Magnitsky Bill

Sergei Magnitsky in a 2006 photo
Sergei Magnitsky in a 2006 photo
Russia's Foreign Ministry says Moscow will have a "tough" response if the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act is adopted in the U.S. Congress.

Sergei Magnitsky was a Moscow attorney who died in a Russian prison in 2009 after being denied medical treatment and allegedly beaten after uncovering fraud by Russian authorities against an American company.

This week, U.S. lawmakers moved to advance the bill in the House of Representatives. The bill proposes visa restrictions and a financial freeze on Russian officials allegedly involved in Magnitsky's death.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Aleksandr Lukashevich told journalists there would be "consequences" to what he called an "anti-Russian initiative."

He also warned that the bill's adoption would “inevitably influence bilateral relations."

Last month, the European Parliament approved a proposal recommending similar restrictions for officials believed to be involved in Magnitsky's death.

Based on reporting by Interfax and ITAR-TASS