The European Parliament has endorsed sanctions against around 60 Russian officials over the death of the lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. He died in custody in 2009 after being arrested on tax evasion charges. The 37-year-old had implicated top officials in a corruption case he was investigating.
The parliament has recommended an EU-wide travel ban. Kristiina Ojuland, the Estonian MEP who was the appointed by the parliament to investigate the case said: “We don’t want to see these individuals on EU territory.”
In addition to the visa ban, the resolution suggests Russian officials involved in the case should have their assets in the European Union frozen.
The move drew an angry response from Moscow. The Russian ambassador to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov said: “Unfortunately this is not improving the climate of our relations with the European Union. This is an attempt to politicise a human tragedy and to make political capital out of the death of Mr Magnitsky.”
A probe into his death revealed the lawyer, who was suffering from untreated pancreatitis and a heart condition, did not receive proper medical care.