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The anti-corruption activist and opposition leader Alexey Navalny has taken to the editorial pages of today’s edition of The Times to encourage the UK to take a harder line on Russian businessmen and state officials who bring money earned via corruption abroad.
In the op-ed, Navalny points out the tremendous volume of money that has flowed into the UK since the collapse of the Soviet Union—much of it gained honestly, but much of it also obtained through the corruption that has become entrenched in Russia over the past twenty years. Navalny makes a powerful case for more robust enforcement of existing anti-corruption laws, such as the 2010 Bribery Act, as well as the consideration of creative new approaches to augment anti-corruption efforts, in line with the Sergey Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act, currently under consideration by the US Congress:
“The [Magnitsky] Bill would require the US to deny visas to and freeze the assets of Russians suspected of involvement in his death, as well as all those who abuse human rights and disregard the rule of law.
“The Kremlin claims that the Bill is anti-Russian and has lobbied to have it stopped in Congress. Let me be clear: it is pro-Russian because it targets the corrupt and criminal who profit at the expense of ordinary citizens.
“Call me naive, but I believe that no public official or executive of state- owned enterprises in Russia — or those who bribe them in order to amass fortunes — should be able to make hundreds of millions while in office and then, once out of it, move to another country as a newly minted, law-abiding citizen without a fuss being made.”
To read the full article, visit The Times.