Human Rights Day – The Magnitsky Bill

December 10, 2018 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Today marks 70 years since the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Michael Danby presents the bill

This important document, recognising human rights as universal, indivisible and inalienable, lies at the heart of the international human rights system.

In the last sitting week of Parliament, Labor MP Michael Danby introduced in the House of Representatives on Monday morning.

In the U.S. the Magnitsky Act has been wielded against Russian officials and the Myanmar military, proposed as a tool to punish China and Saudi Arabia and invoked in the ongoing investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Bloomberg reported: “The Magnitsky Bill was named for Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian tax lawyer who, while working for the international investment company Hermitage Capital Management in 2008, identified what he called a Kremlin-connected scam to steal a $230 million tax rebate that Hermitage had paid to the Russian government in 2006. He was arrested, held without trial and died in a Moscow prison in 2009. The U.S. said he was beaten to death. The Magnitsky Act was written to punish “persons responsible for the detention, abuse and death” of Magnitsky by refusing them entry into the U.S. and freezing any of their assets in the U.S.”

Listen to Michael Danby’s presentation in Canberra

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