EU Adopts New Sanctions Framework, Blacklists Human Rights Abusers
The European Union has adopted a new sanctions framework, which makes it possible to blacklist all those whom Brussels suspects of human rights violations, denying them entry to the EU and freezing their assets. The framework will come into force on December 10. However, it does not contain any names yet, Russian daily Izvestia writes.
On December 7, Brussels hosted an EU Foreign Affairs Council, which was particularly focused on the EU's global human rights sanctions framework, branded by the media as "a European Magnitsky Act." The move was triggered by a poisoning incident involving Alexei Navalny. On September 15, top EU diplomat Josep Borrell called on member states to adopt a mechanism similar to Washington’s Magnitsky Act. He even suggested naming the sanctions regime after Navalny but the European Union eventually dropped the idea.
In response to a question on whether Brussels planned to use the document against Russian nationals, a source in the Council of the EU told the newspaper that they would prefer not to comment on the potential blacklists.
Meanwhile, although the new mechanism’s design is similar to that of the EU’s other sanctions regimes, the difference is that these restrictions may now be imposed on the citizens of countries that haven’t been sanctioned before.
"This is how the European Union’s sanctions mechanism works: the Council of the EU makes a framework decision, based on which sanctions are imposed on individuals and companies. For instance, there is such a mechanism for chemical weapons issues. And now the focus is on human rights. The European Union needs a legal basis to make blacklists and it has created one by establishing this mechanism," Valdai Discussion Club Program Director Ivan Timofeev explained./TASS
"It does not only concern Russia because Belarusians, Iranians and Chinese nationals can also be blacklisted," the expert pointed out.
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