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Foreign Ministry won't rule out adding names to Magnitsky List

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tallinn.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tallinn. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

Estonia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that it cannot rule out that the names of more individuals will be added to the so-called Magnitsky List, or list of foreign nationals barred from entering Estonia due to their alleged participation in the commission of human rights violations.

"The prohibition on entry was imposed on the people included in the Magnitsky List on the basis of the International Sanctions Act," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Sandra Kamilova told BNS on Tuesday. "It is possible for the foreign minister to make proposals to this effect to the government on the basis of said law in the future as well."

71 civil society activists connected to Russia last week called on Minister of Foregin Affairs Sven Mikser (SDE) to ban three Russian citizens who allegedly responsible for the political persecution and arrest of Russian lawyer Dmitry Tretyakov from entering Estonia by adding them to the Magnitsky List.

Two of the three individuals are Vladivostok judges and the third is an official of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB).

Tretyakov, 28, was arrested at the end of March on suspicions of inciting extremism online after he published the writing of the exiled journalist Arkady Babchenko on popular Russian messaging application Telegram about an opposition protest event. A court in Vladivostok took Tretyakov into custody and at the beginning of April the Primorsky Regional Court dismissed an appeal against his arrest.

"The Foreign Ministry has received this appeal and will definitely respond to it," Kamilova said.

The appeal was signed by 71 civil society activists connected to Russia, most of whom have had to leave Russia due to political persecution and are currently living in other European countries.

The Magnitsky List, which includes 49 individuals on whom an entry ban was imposed by the Estonian government on March 29 on the basis of the International Sanctions Act, took effect in Estonia on April 3. The Riigikogu, however, had adopted an amendment in December 2016 already which would allow for the barring of high-ranking Russian officials on the list from entering Estonia.

This legal basis for the application of an entry ban has been dubbed the Magnitsky provision after the case of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who exposed large-scale tax fraud committed by Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs officials and died in unclear circumstances in Moscow's Butyrka Pretrial Prison in 2009 at age 37.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

Source: BNS

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