Putin expresses concern over Europe and ‘Anti-Russian’ U.S. plans

Monday, July 09, 2012
Putin at a meeting with Russian ambassadors and permanent
representatives in International Organisations
[PHOTO: Presidential Press and Information office]  
Moscow: In a wide ranging speech to Russia’s diplomats on Monday the country’s President Vladimir Putin once again has expressed his concerns over a U.S. bill penalizing Russian officials for human rights abuses and Washington's plans for a missile defense system based in Europe.

Last month, a U.S. Senate panel unanimously passed the "Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act," named after a Russian lawyer who died in custody in 2009.

It is considered that the bill would impose a travel ban and asset freeze on Russian officials linked to Magnitsky's jailing and death, as well as other human rights abusers in Russia. A similar measure was passed by a House of Representatives panel in May. It has yet to go to a full House vote.

A number of U.S. Senators have threatened not to vote for the repeal of the Jackson-Vanik amendment, which restricts trade relations with Russia, unless the Magnitsky bill is attached.

Putin has vowed to respond to both the Magnitsky bill and the projected U.S. missile shield in Eastern Europe.
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