12:57 GMT06 March 2021
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The UK's new sanctions against Russian nationals under the Magnitsky Act are another unfriendly step, as well as an attempt to put pressure on justice and interfere in Russia's domestic affairs, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.

    "The UK imposed personal sanctions against Russian citizens. We consider the decision announced on July 6 by the government of this country to introduce sanctions against a number of officials in our country within the framework of the so-called Magnitsky case to be another unfriendly step by the UK authorities," Zakharova said at a briefing.

    The spokeswoman recalled that Moscow had repeatedly provided comprehensive explanations on all issues related to the death of Russian tax accountant Sergei Magnitsky.

    "Apparently, London prefers not to notice them [the explanations], it is not clear on what basis they designate those guilty and determine so-called punishments for them. The UK's acts are nothing but an attempt to intervene in the domestic affairs of another state and exert pressure on the Russian justice system," Zakharova said, adding that the decision will affect bilateral relations. 

    In addition, the spokeswoman noted that Moscow reserved the right to retaliate to UK's sanctions.

    "The principle of reciprocity is one of the fundamentals in international relations, therefore, we reserve the right to retaliate and urge London to abandon the practice of groundless accusations, choosing the path of a civilized dialogue about existing problems and concerns," Zakharova said.

    The UK Foreign Office said on Monday that it has created a new sanctions list to include Russian and Saudi citizens who will face sanctions for being involved in alleged human rights violations. The list is comprised of 25 Russians, including Investigative Committee chief Alexander Bastrykin, 20 Saudi citizens, two Myanmar military generals involved in violence against ethnic minorities, and two North Korean special services.

    Tags:
    Sergei Magnitsky, Maria Zakharova, sanctions, Magnitsky Act, United Kingdom, Russia
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